Mitie Group has announced a deal to sell its catering business to royal warrant holder CH&Co for as much as £85 million, in a move which will narrow the outsourcer's focus amid intense scrutiny on the industry.

The disposal includes the Gather & Gather and Creativevents brands across the UK.

It will fetch an initial £73 million in cash upon completion, as well as a deferred £12 million over the next four years if certain performance targets are met.

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Buyer CH&Co holds a royal warrant for its services, with clients including the Historic Royal Palaces, ZSL London Zoo, and Kew Gardens.

As part of the deal, the companies will enter into a partnership which ensures Gather & Gather remains exclusive to Mitie's clients, with CH&Co providing the service as a preferred partner.

CH&Co boss Bill Toner said: "We are very excited about the future growth potential for our business in our strategic partnership with Mitie - we bring scale and catering expertise, Mitie brings an extensive client list and innovation, we both share a reputation for great customer service."

Mitie Catering managing director Allister Richards will transfer to CH&Co along with all other staff of the business.

Phil Bentley, chief executive of Mitie, said: "Mitie's strategy is to invest in our core technology-led facilities management services - such as Security, Cleaning and Engineering Services - where we have a leading market position."

Shareholders and investors in listed companies across the world received a record payout of $513.8 billion (£422.7 billion) in dividends in the second quarter of the year, according to new research.

However, the latest Janus Henderson Global Dividend Index also saw that the rate of growth in the payments slowed to levels not seen for more than two years.

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Analysts said payouts were 1.1% higher, compared with the same period last year, due to the strength of the US dollar, with underlying growth of 4.6%.

The best-performing country was Japan, with Europe underperforming the rest of the world.

The UK saw underlying growth in dividend payouts of 5.3%, although Janus Henderson pointed out this was mainly due to special dividends paid out - including £1.7 billion by Government-backed Royal Bank of Scotland.

Ben Lofthouse, head of global equity income at Janus Henderson, said: "At this stage in the economic cycle, we are seeing a moderation of dividend increases across a broad range of companies, and the number of cuts is on the rise too.

"The impact of the global economic slowdown is greater in some parts of the world than others, with Europe seeing a particular impact."

Popular forthcoming video games Call Of Duty: Modern Warfare and FIFA 20 are expected to be among those on show at Gamescom in Germany this week.

The five-day gaming trade show opens in Cologne on Tuesday.

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Nintendo and Xbox are among the giants showcasing new products at the event, which allows fans an early chance to see and play the biggest video games months before their official launch.

FIFA 20 is expected to be one of the main draws of the show, with more information on the football game anticipated ahead of its release in September.

The long-running Call Of Duty series is one of the most successful franchises in gaming history, with the next instalment in the series due out in October.

More than 300,000 people are expected to attend the show, which will also feature an announcement from car company Ford, which has said it will unveil plans around its involvement in e-sports.