Business

Nut-rage heiress jailed – also Fosun, Bombardier, Tchenguiz and Rothschild

Nut-rage exec jailed

Heather Cho, the nut-rage heiress, has been sentenced to a year in jail for violating air-traffic safety laws. The judge said that she had “trampled” on the dignity of the staff member who served her nuts in a bag rather than on a plate on the Korean Air flight. Cho, whose father owns the airline, notoriously demanded the plane return to its stand so the steward could be escorted off the plane.

Fosun lands Club Med

After a five-year battle, Chinese family-controlled investment vehicle Fosun has taken ownership of the Club Med holidays group for almost €1bn. The French firm was founded in 1961 by a Belgian water-polo player called Gérard Blitz and grew under the ownership of the Trigano family, who were financed by Baron Edmond de Rothschild, until they were ousted in 1997. Fosun trumped a bid from a consortium which included the Italian Bonomi family, which was backed by the Triganos.

Bombardier family sidelined

The family that controls Bombardier, the biggest train-maker in the world, is to step away from the company’s management. The founder’s grandson Pierre Beaudoin has passed the chief executive position to a non-family member and his father has stepped down as chairman after 50 years. The business, which also makes aircraft and has been trying to break Boeing and Airbus’s dominance of the large passenger plane market, reported a $1.59bn net loss in the fourth quarter, scrapped a dividend and announced a $600m share buyback.

Tchenguiz rights and wrongs

Robert Tchenguiz, a colourful Iranian-British property who with his brother Vincent runs an investment empire, has invoked human rights law to argue that he doesn’t have to hand over documents to accountants who are trying to seize some of his assets. The brothers got badly tangled up in the collapse of the Icelandic bank Kaupthing in 2008, and won large pay-outs from the Serious Fraud Office after it raided their homes and offices as part of an investigation into them which later collapsed.

Rothschild to the rescue?

Nat Rothschild is to inject $100m into Asia Resource Minerals, the Indonesian coal-mining company formerly known as Bumi which he co-founded with Indonesia’s Bakrie family before they fell out. Rothschild currently owns 17% of the business but he could take control under the deal, which would involve investors extending the maturity of almost $1bn of debt.

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