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Dotcom Entrepreneur of the Year sacks quarter of workforce

Rubus boss adds scalps to gong-laden mantelpiece

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British dotcom consultancy, Rubus - voted CBI Most Promising New Company 1999 - has axed 75 people from it staff.

Those given the chop include people across all disciplines. With Christmas just around the corner staff are hacked off with the timing - and the way they've been treated by Rubus.

The company is also closing its office in France. It's also decided not to open one planned for Amsterdam.

The redundancies - a quarter of Rubus' workforce - is even more galling because in October, top man, Michael Walton, walked away with the Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year 2000 award. Just think what he'd have got if he ran a business that made money and didn't have to sack people.



Five companies have shown an interest in LineOne after the British ISP was put up for sale last week. Those old favourites, T-Online and Tiscali are thought to be among the bidders, according to the

FT

. Last week Le Freeserve was sold to French outfit, Wanadoo, for £1.65 billion. LineOne can be yours for a snip at around £180 million.




The AOL/Time Warner deal is getting closer to a finish, sparking another set of objections by consumer groups and rival ISPs. The FTC will decide today (or so it says) whether to let the deal pass through. It seems likely that it will give them the green light, but there is an outside chance that it will demand more concessions.




Lloyds TSB has ditched plans to start its own online bank, Evolvebank.com, and has opted instead to build an e-bank for Centrica’s credit card, Goldfish. The new bank is expected to break even by 2003 and have two million customers by 2005.




Meanwhile Egg says that although it has grown its online customer base, its telephone customers are still leaving in droves. The trouble here is that the net bankers have lower average balances than those who manage their accounts by phone. Despite this, in a recent meeting with analysts, Egg said it would meet its published commitments. ®



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