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Jul 30, 2014

British American Tobacco profit hit by strong pound

LONDON, July 30 (Reuters) – British American Tobacco
reported lower revenue and profit for the six months
ended June 30, hurt by the strong British pound and a slight
decline in volume.

Excluding the impact of foreign exchange rates, the world’s
No. 2 tobacco company by sales cited improved market share for
its Rothmans, Pall Mall and Dunhill brands and strong
performance in places including Indonesia and Mexico.

Jul 29, 2014

Corporate price cutting highlights European deflation threat

LONDON, July 29 (Reuters) – Weak consumer spending and
intense competition among retailers are forcing some makers of
packaged goods to lower their prices, intensifying the threat of
euro zone deflation.

Annual inflation is running at just 0.5 percent in the
currency area, well into what the European Central Bank has
described as a “danger zone” below 1 percent, and could fall
further when figures for July are released later this week.

Jul 24, 2014

Tough pricing and slower emerging markets hit Unilever sales

LONDON (Reuters) – Unilever (ULVR.L: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) (UNc.AS: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) missed second-quarter sales expectations on Thursday, citing a slowdown in emerging markets and declining prices in developed ones.

The Anglo-Dutch maker of Ben & Jerry’s ice cream, Dove soap and Lipton tea said underlying sales – which exclude the impact of foreign exchange, acquisitions and disposals – rose 3.8 percent, below analysts’ expectations of 4.3 percent.

Jul 21, 2014

Tesco CEO Clarke to leave after profit warning

LONDON, July 21 (Reuters) – Tesco boss Philip
Clarke is to quit after Britain’s biggest retailer warned it
would miss profit forecasts, bringing an abrupt end to a
disastrous three year reign.

Clarke, who has spent more than 1 billion pounds ($1.7
billion) on a failed turnaround plan, will be replaced on Oct. 1
by Unilever executive Dave Lewis, who is credited with
revamping a number of businesses at the consumer goods group.

Jul 20, 2014

D.E Master Blenders, Mondelez weigh sale, options for 2 brands -sources

PARIS/LONDON, July 20 (Reuters) – Mondelez International Inc
and D.E Master Blenders 1753 are considering options
including a possible sale of French coffee brands L’Or and Grand
Mere as they prepare to merge their coffee businesses, sources
familiar with the matter said.

The companies said in May they would form a joint venture,
controlled by D.E Master Blenders’ private parent JAB Holding
Co., which would be the world’s No. 2 player behind Nestle
.

Jul 18, 2014

Exclusive: Nigerian drinks firm Chi weighing options – sources

PARIS/LONDON (Reuters) – Nigerian drinks company Chi Ltd is exploring options including a potential sale that could value it at as much as $1 billion, according to sources familiar with the matter.

A sale of Chi, part of the unlisted conglomerate TGI Group, would be the latest investment opportunity in Africa’s burgeoning food and drink sector for multi-nationals seeking to cash in on the continent’s emerging middle class.

Jul 18, 2014

Nigerian drinks firm Chi weighing options – sources

PARIS/LONDON (Reuters) – Nigerian drinks company Chi Ltd is exploring options including a potential sale that could value it at as much as $1 billion (585 million pounds), according to sources familiar with the matter.

A sale of Chi, part of the unlisted conglomerate TGI Group, would be the latest investment opportunity in Africa’s burgeoning food and drink sector for multi-nationals seeking to cash in on the continent’s emerging middle class.

Jul 15, 2014

Imperial Tobacco to buy US cigarette brands for $7.1 billion

LONDON (Reuters) – Imperial Tobacco Group Plc (IMT.L: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) plans to buy the leading U.S. e-cigarette brand blu as part of its $7.1 billion acquisition of U.S. cigarette brands, being sold as part of Reynolds American Inc’s (RAI.N: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) $27.4 billion purchase of Lorillard Inc (LO.N: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz).

Imperial’s purchase, meant to address potential antitrust objections to the marriage of the United States’ No. 2 and No. 3 tobacco firms, also includes Maverick, Salem as well as the international and U.S. rights to blu e-cigarettes, which control nearly half of the U.S. e-cigarette market.

Jul 4, 2014

In Africa, a Cube and a Parachute test consumer demand

LONDON/ACCRA, July 4 (Reuters) – Tucked in a corner of a
Guinness brewery in a run-down part of Ghana’s capital, flanked
by industrial silos and crates of bottles, stands the Cube, a
gleaming mini-factory that may point the way forward for global
consumer goods companies in Africa.

The tiny blending and bottling plant for Gilbey’s gin,
housed inside five connected shipping containers, gives Diageo
, the world’s largest spirits maker, a way to test demand
for new drinks while minimising capital deployment.

Jul 1, 2014

Food makers feel their way towards online future

PARIS, July 1 (Reuters) – Grocery manufacturers are
struggling to adapt to the online world and need to invest in
smarter packaging, presentation and supply chains to reap the
long term benefits.

E-commerce accounts for just 3.7 percent of sales for
fast-moving items like food, drinks and personal care products,
market researcher Kantar Worldpanel says, forecasting a rise to
5 percent by 2016 as supermarkets develop their web sites and
online only retailers like Amazon and Ocado
take them on.