UK media and telecoms correspondent
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May 29, 2014

Centrica loses second executive in five months

LONDON, May 29 (Reuters) – Britain’s Centrica said
the head of its British Gas division was leaving the company,
the second big-name departure to be announced in five months as
it battles public anger over soaring energy bills.

Chris Weston, who will become the new boss of power provider
Aggreko next year, joins Centrica’s Finance Director
Nick Luff in announcing his intention to leave. Media have
speculated that Chief Executive Sam Laidlaw may also soon quit.

May 22, 2014

British property website Zoopla joins rush to stock market

LONDON, May 22 (Reuters) – Britain’s second-largest property
website Zoopla plans to list its shares on the London stock
market next month to tap into rising confidence in the country’s
housing sector, potentially valuing the group at about 1 billion
pounds ($1.7 billion).

Majority owner Daily Mail & General Trust (DMGT)
said Zoopla’s existing owners planned to sell shares in June to
institutional investors and the estate agents who pay to list
properties on its websites.

May 20, 2014

Vodafone calls on Modi to show open stance with tax talks

LONDON/NEW DELHI (Reuters) – Vodafone (VOD.L: Quote, Profile, Research) boss Vittorio Colao has challenged India’s new government to back up its pro-business credentials by resolving the telecoms group’s long-running tax dispute in the country.

The British company became India’s largest overseas corporate investor when it acquired Hutchison Whampoa’s (0013.HK: Quote, Profile, Research) Indian mobile assets in 2007 as part of its strategy of chasing growth in emerging markets.

May 20, 2014

Vodafone calls on India’s Modi to show open stance with tax talks

LONDON/NEW DELHI, May 20 (Reuters) – Vodafone boss
Vittorio Colao has challenged India’s new government to back up
its pro-business credentials by resolving the telecoms group’s
long-running tax dispute in the country.

The British company became India’s largest overseas
corporate investor when it acquired Hutchison Whampoa’s
Indian mobile assets in 2007 as part of its strategy
of chasing growth in emerging markets.

May 20, 2014

Vodafone sees 2015 earnings hit by network investment

LONDON, May 20 (Reuters) – Britain’s Vodafone said
next year’s earnings would be hit by vital investment in its
network, as it reported a 6.6 billion-pound dent to its 2014
results from writing down the value of European operations
struggling in a tough market.

The world’s second-largest mobile operator has reported
record falls in underlying revenue in the last 18 months, due to
fierce competition, regulator-imposed price cuts and European
consumers reducing the number of calls they make to save money.

May 19, 2014

UK takeover rules block higher Pfizer offer before Astra deadline

LONDON (Reuters) – U.S. drugmaker Pfizer has left itself no room to return with a higher offer for AstraZeneca before a deadline expires next Monday due to Britain’s strict takeover rules, even if the British firm wanted it to, experts say.

Astra, Britain’s second largest drugmaker, rejected Pfizer’s fourth and “final” offer on Monday, just hours after receiving it, saying the $118 billion proposal still undervalued the firm.

May 14, 2014

MPs give Pfizer stick as it waves carrot at AstraZeneca

LONDON (Reuters) – U.S. drugmaker Pfizer hinted it could raise its proposed $106 billion (62.9 billion pounds) offer if AstraZeneca would only engage in talks, as its boss was grilled by MPs on his commitment to British research spending and jobs.

In response AstraZeneca said it would have to consider a compelling offer but accused Pfizer of an “opportunistic” proposal and a ploy to cut taxes that risked its reputation.

May 13, 2014

UK lawmakers give Pfizer stick as it waves carrot at AstraZeneca

LONDON (Reuters) – U.S. drugmaker Pfizer hinted it could raise its proposed $106 billion offer if AstraZeneca would only engage in talks, as its boss was grilled by UK lawmakers on his commitment to British research spending and jobs.

In response AstraZeneca said it would have to consider a compelling offer but accused Pfizer of an “opportunistic” proposal and a ploy to cut taxes that risked its reputation.

May 13, 2014

Pfizer urges AstraZeneca to talk as MPs slam offer

LONDON (Reuters) – U.S. drugmaker Pfizer suggested it could raise its proposed $106 billion (62.9 billion pounds) offer if AstraZeneca engaged in talks, as its boss was grilled by MPs on his commitment to British research spending and jobs.

The New York-based group said it was disappointed by AstraZeneca’s refusal to discuss its proposed merger. Chief Executive Ian Read did not rule out a hostile bid, telling a parliamentary committee he had various “options” for his next move.

May 13, 2014

Pfizer urges AstraZeneca to talk as UK lawmakers slam offer

LONDON (Reuters) – U.S. drugmaker Pfizer suggested it could raise its proposed $106 billion offer if AstraZeneca engaged in talks, as its boss was grilled by UK lawmakers on his commitment to British research spending and jobs.

The New York-based group said it was disappointed by AstraZeneca’s refusal to discuss its proposed merger. Chief Executive Ian Read did not rule out a hostile bid, telling a parliamentary committee he had various “options” for his next move.

    • About Kate

      "I am based in London and cover the UK media and telecoms sectors including BSkyB, Vodafone and WPP. I have previously covered UK general news and sports including major events such as the Olympics and football World Cups."
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