Waitrose Twitter hashtag invites ridicule

Supermarket was asking for trouble when it challenged tweeters to finish the sentence ‘I shop at Waitrose because…’

When the supermarket chain Waitrose challenged shoppers to “finish the sentence: ‘I shop at Waitrose because …’ #WaitroseReasons” on Monday, it could not have envisaged the subsequent Twitter storm as internet jokers piled in to ridicule the brand for its posh image.

Instead of saying they preferred the supermarket to rivals for, perhaps, its wide range of organic produce, internet wags posted gags sending it up as a retail temple for the well-heeled. Two of the spoof Twitter recommendations were that the upmarket shop was the best place to pick up unicorn food and 24ct gold thread toilet paper. One posted: “I shop at Waitrose because it makes me feel important and I absolutely detest being surrounded by poor people,” and commented: “I also shop at Waitrose because I was once in the Holloway Road branch and heard a dad say ‘Put the papaya down, Orlando!'”

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How Sir Martin found out that it doesn’t always pay to advertise

The WPP boss stood up publicly to defend his salary – but, emboldened by a year of rebellions, his investors took no heed

Sir Martin Sorrell tells his high-spending advertising clients that there’s no such thing as bad publicity. But the globe-trotting boss of WPP is unlikely to have enjoyed the limelight much last week, when a 30% rise in his salary caused an investor outcry and sparked a humiliating defeat for the media company’s pay policy, in the highest-profile victory for investors during the current “shareholder spring”.

Sorrell knew the pay deal – taking his salary to £1.3m and total remuneration for 2011 to £13m – was facing rejection. But the decision to cling on to the pay rise shows the determination of the 67-year-old, who, according to an analysis by the Observer, has taken home more than £110m in the last 10 years from bonus schemes dating back as far as the early 1990s.

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Barclay twins acted unlawfully in hotels fight, court told

• Challenge by investor who lost control of £1bn group
• Brothers admit payments to family ‘in hour of need’

The Barclay brothers, owners of the Telegraph newspaper and the Ritz hotel, were accused of behaving “dishonourably and unlawfully” in a bitter battle over three of London’s top hotels – Claridge’s, the Connaught and the Berkeley.

Allegations centre on the way the twins wrested control of the parent firm from a group of Irish entrepreneurs, who had bought the company in an aggressively debt-fuelled deal eight years ago.

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Virgin brands: What does Richard Branson really own?

Richard Branson’s Virgin group is a diverse array of businesses – few wholly owned by the unconventional entrepreneur himself

The sprawling business empire that makes up Richard Branson’s Virgin investment group consists of about 400 operations, a tangled web of enterprises owned via a complicated series of offshore trusts and overseas holding companies.

Branson’s finances are difficult to penetrate because of their complexity and opaqueness, with few of his large companies wholly owned by Branson himself. His big-branded firms such as Virgin Atlantic, Virgin Money, Virgin Media and Virgin Trains have other major shareholders. In some cases, he simply licenses the brand to a company that has purchased a subsidiary from him, and these include Virgin Mobile USA, Virgin Mobile Australia, Virgin Radio and Virgin Music (now part of EMI). In return, as the licence holder of the Virgin brand, he receives annual or triennial fees that can amount to hundreds of millions over time.

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Virgin brands: What does Richard Branson really own?

Richard Branson’s Virgin group is a diverse array of businesses – few wholly owned by the unconventional entrepreneur himself

The sprawling business empire that makes up Richard Branson’s Virgin investment group consists of about 400 operations, a tangled web of enterprises owned via a complicated series of offshore trusts and overseas holding companies.

Branson’s finances are difficult to penetrate because of their complexity and opaqueness, with few of his large companies wholly owned by Branson himself. His big-branded firms such as Virgin Atlantic, Virgin Money, Virgin Media and Virgin Trains have other major shareholders. In some cases, he simply licenses the brand to a company that has purchased a subsidiary from him, and these include Virgin Mobile USA, Virgin Mobile Australia, Virgin Radio and Virgin Music (now part of EMI). In return, as the licence holder of the Virgin brand, he receives annual or triennial fees that can amount to hundreds of millions over time.

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Fred Goodwin told by judge details of his affair were in the public interest

Judge tells former chief executive of RBS he is ‘public figure’, distinguishing him from someone like Ryan Giggs Sir Fred Goodwin, the former chief executive of the Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS), could not have expected to keep an alleged affair with a …

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Fred Goodwin told by judge details of his affair were in the public interest

Judge tells former chief executive of RBS he is ‘public figure’, distinguishing him from someone like Ryan Giggs Sir Fred Goodwin, the former chief executive of the Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS), could not have expected to keep an alleged affair with a …

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