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Entrepreneurs Panel

Michael Oliver
Jennie Johnson
Richard O'Sullivan
Debbie Pierce
Julie Meyer
Steve Purdham
Brian Hay
David Pollock
Jeremy Roberts
Laura Tenison
Tony Caldeira
Charlie Mullins

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Manufacturers saw both output and new orders increase pick up during January after a slowdown in the second half of 2014, according to a new survey.

Manufacturing's upturn continued in November with solid expansions of output, new orders and employment, according to an industry snapshot.

A surge in housing activity has boosted construction output, a new report has revealed.

The services sector expanded for the second month in a row and at the fastest pace in five months during February, raising hopes that the UK will avoid a triple-dip recession.

Output in the construction industry contracted at the sharpest rate since October 2009 during February, with commercial development and civil engineering showing steep declines.

The manufacturing sector lost "considerable momentum" in February after unexpected declines in output, new orders and employment, posing a "major setback" to the UK's hopes of avoiding a triple-dip recession.

The UK service sector saw output drop for the first time in two years during December as economic uncertainty hit demand and led to a fall in employment, heightening fears that the UK is sliding towards a triple-dip recession.

Business confidence in the UK's construction industry hit the lowest point in nearly four years in November as new orders declined at the sharpest pace since April 2009, according to a new report.

The downturn in the UK's manufacturing sector eased in November as overall production rose for the first time in five months - but the recession in the eurozone hit exports, investment and recruitment.

Global business confidence fell to its lowest point since the worldwide economy emerged from the 2008-09 recession during October, although British firms were actually feeling more upbeat.

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Five Minutes With

David Hughes sums up his entrepreneurial career to date thus: four spectacular successes and two failures. He founded the sports retailer Allsports and achieved turnover of £180 million before a vicious price war meant decline, administration in 2005 and a sell-off to rival JD Sports.

It took Richard Shonn, managing director of 151 Products, three years to find a warehouse big enough for his requirements.