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The weekend newspaper round up: October 16 to 17, 2010

A round up of the best fashion business stories from the weekend’s newspapers.

  • Rob Templeman, chief executive of debenhams“>Debenhams, has emerged as a surprise contender to become chief executive of Gala Coral, the gaming giant, as reported in The Sunday Times. A source close to Templeman said he remained commited to Debenhams.
  • The outsize menswear chain High & Mighty is on the hunt for larger salespeople to offer “empathetic” service to its unusually shaped customers as it embarks on rapid store expansion, The Observer reported. High & Mighty plans to grow from 14 stores to 25 outlets over three years, kicking off with openings in Liverpool, Newcastle and Belfast.
  • Retailers are looking at what one retail analyst calls “coping strategies”, which price rises to happen discreetly enough not to deter spending, an analysis in the FT Weekend explains. One tactic is to get the move in early to avoid visible price rises on the day the increase comes into force. The article goes on to examine the possibilities.
  • One New Change, the Square Mile’s first purpose-built shopping mall, will open at near full occupancy later this month, the Sunday Express reported. The development, on Cheapside near St Paul’s Cathedral, opens on October 28. Spanish group Cortefiel will open stores in the scheme for lingerie chain Women’secret and menswear chain Springfield.
  • A husband and wife shoplifting team stole more than £50,000 of goods from a John Lewis department store, which they went on to sell for a total of £38,000 on Ebay, the Saturday Telegraph reported. A staff member grew suspicious after spotting the couple selling a large amount of John Lewis goods online.
  • The row over The X Factor’s links to Tesco has been reignited by the mother of finalist Katie Waissel, who claims the supermarket has been plugging till worker Mary Byrne, the Mail on Sunday reported. The supermarket has sent emails reminding its 300,000 employees of 50-year-old Irishwoman Ms Byrne’s forthcoming appearance in the live finals.
  • Poor harvests, soaring demand from China and market speculation have “exploded” the cotton market, traders say, according to a report in The Independent. December future prices in New York hit record highs of almost 120 cents a pound yesterday, before subsiding in later trading, the paper continues.

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