News in brief

The introduction of the single European currency could lead to more than two-thirds of corporate customers switching banks, according to a survey by The Boston Consulting Group. It also predicts that a minimum of five global banks will dominate cross border payments over the next decade. For a copy of the report, Global Payments 1998, call 0171 753 5353.

Logica believes that the UK’s supermarket chains will become major players in the new #35bn market for individual savings accounts. It is thought that, with the introduction of smart card technology, supermarkets will be able to provide consumers with instant access to their money. It is estimated that 8.75 million people will take up the new savings accounts.

Knowledge management consultant Robert Taylor of KPMG has predicted a global market for buying and selling information in the first few years of the new millennium. Speaking at a knowledge management conference organised by Unicom, he envisaged a type of international stock market developing where information will be bought and sold. The Internet is seen as a key factor in implementing such innovations.

EC Harris has been appointed to provide technical risk advice to the Bank of Scotland which is funding the construction of Victoria Dock Primary School in Hull. This is the first school in the country to be built under the Private Finance Initiative (PFI). EC Harris will advise the bank on the risks associated with technical matters relating to design, construction, operation and preventative maintenance.

KPMG reports that European companies struggling to cope with the soon to be introduced Economic and Monetary Union face a new threat from US businesses. The firm has carried out research among US companies and found them to be in a better state of preparedness in many respects than their European counterparts. This is particularly true in a number of key areas such as readiness for pricing issues and company location.

The firm interviewed over 100 major US companies during its research.

Consultancy Darwin has followed on from its link up with the English National Ballet by supporting designer Neil Adams during the recent London men’s fashion week. Other sponsors included Harrods and Selfridges.

ECA International, a consultancy dealing in international human resources has launched an interactive Web site aimed at the spouses and families of executives working overseas. The site offers a number of services for expatriate families aiming to get the most out of their posting abroad. The 24-hour site is available on

A report by ECA International concludes that London is the most expensive destination in the EU for business travellers and tourists. The report, designed to calculate the costs of short business trips abroad, found that the average overnight stay in London worked out at #229 per person, almost double that of the cheapest destination, Athens. Further details about the report are available from Emily Tuite at ECA on 0171 351 5000

A joint venture between AT Kearney, EDS and Rolls Royce has scooped the 1997 Marketing Design Award. The Aerospace Centre of Excellence won the prize for the best use of design in the aerospace industry. The three company collaboration is part of a 10-year partnership working on a programme called “Better Performance Faster”.

DA Consulting Group has announced that its revenue for the year has almost doubled, with net income rising threefold. Revenue increased from $9.9m to $19.7m for the year ended 30 June 1998. The company attributes the revenue growth to increased demand for Enterprise Resource Planning software systems.

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