HELLO and welcome to the Business Briefing on Monday, August 9, as more restrictions are lifted across Scotland and the United Nation’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change issues “the starkest warning yet” on the state of the climate crisis ahead of hosting the COP26 conference in Glasgow.

Legal requirements for physical distancing - except in healthcare settings - and gatherings have been removed and all venues, including nightclubs, are now able to reopen in Scotland from today.

Also this morning, the battle for supermarket giant Morrisons has been extended and, in Business Voices, Stuart Mackinnon, deputy head of external affairs for the FSB in Scotland, says the return of nightlife boosts jobs but there will still be casualties.

Morrisons takeover battle extended

TAKEOVER regulators have extended the battle for supermarket Morrisons by a further two weeks, giving a US suitor more time to make a bid.

Clayton, Dubilier & Rice will have until 5pm on August 20 to either say what it wants to offer for Morrisons, or to walk away.

CD&R had originally been turned down by the Morrisons board over a potential £5.5 billion bid.

In June the board said the offer "significantly undervalued Morrisons and its future prospects".

Since then CD&R has been pondering whether it should increase its bid for the supermarket chain.

In this time it has been overtaken by a rival consortium led by private equity company Fortress.

Last month Morrisons' board recommended Fortress's £6.3 billion bid for the company.

On Friday that offer was increased to £6.7 billion as Fortress tried to put CD&R off from making another offer.

CD&R originally had until 5pm on Monday to make a firm offer for Morrisons, or to walk away from the supermarket.

However, the Takeover Panel, which regulates acquisitions of listed companies, has now said it will give the US firm until 5pm on August 20 to make its bid.

It came after Morrisons announced that it would delay a shareholder meeting to vote on the Fortress offer until August 27, the panel said.

It added: "This deadline will cease to apply if, before that time, a third party other than CD&R has announced a firm intention to make an offer for Morrisons. Each of Morrisons, Oppidum (the Fortress consortium) and CD&R has accepted this ruling."

Return of nightlife boosts jobs but there will still be casualties

THE cloakroom and security staff welcoming punters back to city nightclubs in Glasgow this week won’t have been working from home over the last 18 months.

These workers will either be returning from furlough, or are new recruits.

Scottish economy rebounds, inflation a concern

SCOTLAND'S economy continued to rebound from the depths of lockdown during July, but shortages of materials and labour saw costs rise at the fastest rate recorded since the early part of 2011.

According to the Royal Bank of Scotland PMI report, which tracks the private sector, activity across the manufacturing and services industries rose for a fifth month in a row. 

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