Sportingbet Admits to Wooing Empire; News in Brief

Article excerpt

SPORTINGBET (up 3p to 371p) confirmed that it is the suitor in early-stage offer talks with online gambling marketing firm Empire Online (19p higher at 283p).

Meanwhile, one of Empire's key customers, PartyGaming (off 1p at 1563/4p), kept silent as to whether it would enter the bidding fray when it releases half-year results this morning.

Queue for Jurys

INVESTORS are lining up to get their hands on Jurys Doyle, the Irish hotel chain.

Property developer Sean Dunne raised his stake to 21.32pc after buying another 4m shares on Friday and Liam Carroll, Ireland's biggest apartment developer, has picked up a further 616,000 shares, lifting his holding to 8.3pc.

IMI on prowl

ENGINEERING company IMI is steeling itself for a string of small acquisitions after selling its building products wing Polypipe for [pounds sterling]293m. The group yesterday said it had a war chest of up to [pounds sterling]400m and had identified 'a number' of targets in the [pounds sterling]30m-[pounds sterling]40m range in the US and Asia.

Somerfield plan

THE Livingstone brothers, who are stalking Somerfield, hope to sell on around 500 supermarket stores to United Co-operatives if their [pounds sterling] 1bnplus bid is successful. …