Wealthy US donors gave millions to rightwing UK groups

Revelations raise questions about influence of foreign funding on British politics Eleven wealthy American donors who have given a total of more than $3.7m (2.86m) to rightwing UK groups in the past five years have been identified, raising questions about the influence of foreign funding on British politics. The donations have been given to four British thinktanks that have been vocal in the debate about Brexit and the shape of the UKs future trade with the EU, and an organisation that claims to be an independent grassroots campaign representing ordinary British taxpayers. Many of the donors have also given significant sums of money to a series of like-minded American groups which, like the British organisations, promote a free market agenda …

PR pitch to Ola reveals the inner workings of UK ride-hailing politics

A UK PR firm pitching to run an account for Ola has proposed running a campaign to politicize ride-hailing as a tactic to shift regulations in its favor. The approach suggests that, despite the appearance of ride-hailing platforms taking a more conciliatory position with regulators that are now wise to earlier startup tactics in this space, there remains a calculus involving realpolitik, propaganda and high-level lobbying between companies that want to enter or expand in markets, and those who hold the golden tickets to do so. In 2017 Estonia-based ride-hailing startup Taxify tried to launch in London ahead of regulatory approval, for example, but city authorities clamped down straight away. It was only able to return to the UK capital …