VCs press on with WHSmith

Venture capitalist Permira continued to pore over WHSmith's books this week, despite concerns it might have to find an extra£250 million.

Permira has put forward an indicative offer of£940 million. However, trustees have demanded that a£250 million pension deficit be paid up front, as the high level of debt in a Permira-run WHS would put pension fund obligation at risk should the business hit trouble.

Separately, WHS has signed Robert Moorhead as UK retail finance director. He joins in the autumn from Specsavers.