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Glaxo's HIV Division in deal to treat millions in Africa.

GlaxoSmithKline's HIV drug business (ViiV Healthcare) has agreed a deal with the Governemnt of Botswana to roll out a treatment for millions living with the virus as part of a national health plan. Dolutegravir ( brand name Tivicay) wil be made available to al Botswanan's newly diagnosed via the "Treat All" programme. 70% ofthe global population infected with HIV live in Sub-Saharan Africa. This is the first time that Dolutegravir, the first of the specialist HIV drugs to gain regulatory approval, in 2013, will be made available as part of a national health plan in the region, since WHO recommended the drug as an alternative priority treatment in 2015. Dominque Limet, CEO of ViiV Healthcare, commented 'This tender agreeemnt is a great moment as part of our commitment to accelerating access to our treatments in Africa'. The company also counts Pfizer and Shionogi of Japan among its investors.

(The Times June 4 2016)

BHS Shambles rolls on. Green looks to escape Pension Mire

Discussions are ongoing betwenn Green and the Pension Protection Fund (PPF) to come up with a plan to restructure the Company Pension Scheme, currently £571M in deficit. Green is due to appear before a parliamentary enquiry to explain the sale of the business to three times bankrupt Dominic Chappell for £1. BHS is now in administration with 11,000 jobs at risk across 164 stores. 20,000 pension fund members are set to be transferred to the PPF with a possible loss of circa 10% of their benefits. The Pensions Regulator is also investigating Green about BHS.  A £10m payment by Arcadia to Retail Acquisitions (Chappell's consortium), is also muddying the waters, with various claims about the use of this sum being aired. A contribution by Green to the pension fund is a possible option to reduce the deficit, but even £80m ( a sum that was suggested as part of an earlier restructiring scheme) will hardly make a dent in the £400m Green took out in dividends before the deal was done with Chappell.) To date no-one linked with this mess has come out well, including financial advisors, lawyers and Green himself. 

(The Sunday Times July 5th 2016)

Sainsbury's sales to slide again

Sainsbury's is expected to announce a fall in like for like 1st quarter sales of around 1.4% as questions mount over the retail giant's £1.4 bn takeover of Argos. The deal, agreed in April,  is under review by the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA). The CMA could clear the deal soon, but is likely to ask for a more detailed analysis. Homebase, the other part of Home Retail Group, was finally bought by Australian company Wesfarmers. Mike Coupe, who took over from Justin King 2 years ago, launched a bid for Home Retail in January. Last week it emerged that Coupe's pay package nearly doubled to £2.8m last year, despite an underlying fall in the supermarket's profits

(The Sunday Times 5th June 2016

 

Quotes of the month

Computers make very fast, very accurate mistakes ( Anon)

A professional is someone who can do his best work when he doesn't feel like it ( Alistair Cooke, media personality )

By working faithfully 8 hours  a day, you may eventually become the boss and work 12 hours per day.( Robert Frost)