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Wednesday, December 06, 2006

Ain’t life grand?

Harrods boss Mohammed Fayed has just paid himself £72m. Not bad for a year’s work.
Except it doesn’t actually reflect a year’s work. Because Harrods actually made £22.3m this year. Oh, and it has debts of £279m.

Now, I’m obviously not an economist, but isn’t that all a little bit mental?
And more to the point, wasn’t the £39m he paid himself last year enough? Wouldn’t it stretch to this year too? What does the man eat - gold?

Ah, now when you examine things a little more closely, it all starts to make a lot more sense. What we’re seeing here is not true economics at work, it’s “screwing the workers” economics.

Closure of the Harrods pension scheme!
£90m pensions deficit!
Staff threatening strike action!

Still, comfortingly, it seems Mohammed is oblivious. As far as he is concerned, his staff don’t mind in the least that he needs to top up his dwindling personal fortune of…erm…£426m. I mean, at 73 years of age, he’s going to need a few quid for his pensionable years, isn’t he?

“The year has gone very well. We continue to reap the benefits from ongoing investment and improved product offers across all divisions. We are excited about the prospect of a very successful year with our key Christmas and January sale periods still to unfold,” he says, between stuffing wads of fifties into his car boot.

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