News in brief

Deloitte & Touche has launched Industry Print Retail, a tool designed to accelerate the implementation of SAP’s R/3 business applications solution. It defines model business processes for food and non-food retailing, wholesaling and global retail operations.

Facilities management firm FBA has been appointed by the Ministry of Defence to provide management consultancy services for its Competing for Quality programme. In the five-year deal FBA will provide consultancy and contractor services to the MoD and its agencies, working in partnership with MacGregor Associates.

The UK suffered 55 cases of fraud over #100,000 in 1997, costing a total of #120m, according to a survey by KPMG’s forensic accounting arm.

This is a drop from the 74 cases recorded in 1996, but the cost of fraud has risen by #25m. The banking and financial sector suffered the most frauds, with 18 cases over the #100,000 mark.

Brunel International has launched Brunel Management Consultants, an operating company specialising in interim management and management consultancy. It will be based in the Netherlands.

In response to a commission by seven high street retailers, Chateris has developed Selfcheck, a system to test the reliance of equipment susceptible to the millennium problem. The retailers, including John Lewis and Marks & Spencer, have agreed to pool resources and knowledge in dealing with the threat.

121 Consulting, 121 Assist and Enable Information Technology have been relaunched as Team 121.

The expanded company is an accredited SAP R/3 consulting partner and reseller. The company plans to have around 400 employees by the end of the year. Team 121 also has plans to open additional European offices.

Cap Gemini has predicted a number of major changes for the UK electricity industry in the new millennium. The company forecasts that by 2003 trading in the electricity market will be run on a free market system with bilateral trading arrangements between generators and supply companies. By 2015 Cap Gemini envisages the emergence of a single energy market across Europe dominated by what it terms “super utilities”.

Logica and the Universal Postal Union have developed a scheme using a secure gateway for electronic international money orders. The service will electronically link post offices around the world, with a pilot scheme running between the US and Mexico. The scheme will benefit overseas workers who send their earnings home to different parts of the world.

Coopers & Lybrand’s national property register, which has sold commercial property worth #504m since its launch in 1993, is to go live on the Internet.

Potential purchasers will be able to select properties on the basis of three criteria; location, price and type. Those interested can receive details on

Philip Banks, vice president at AT Kearney is to become chairman of the Friends of the National Maritime Museum. He replaces record-breaking yachtsman Sir Robin Knox-Johnston. AT Kearney is a corporate member of the museum and holds a permanent collection of the museum’s paintings at its Lansdowne House offices.

An Ernst & Young survey has revealed that the worst business fraud occurs from within companies and is perpetuated by employees. The survey, Fraud: the unmanaged risk, reveals that 84 per cent of fraud is committed by company employees, with companies losing billions of dollars each year. The survey questioned senior executives from major organisations in 32 countries.

The MCA and the Financial Times have announced their annual anti-jargon competition which intends to uncover the worst cases of gobbledegook and jargon produced by professional advisers to business. Last year’s competition uncovered the previously unheard-of phrase “shoddipush”, used to describe an ailing business. Individuals have until October to uncover the worst examples and send them to Will White at the MCA.

The EC is searching Europe for young executives willing to spend 18 months in Japan to learn about the language and the country’s business, culture and management. Previous participants estimate that the scheme has helped increase their business with Japan by up to 20 per cent. Contact John Patrick at SHL on 0181 398 4170.

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