LONDON, May 23 (Reuters) – Cycles-to-car-parts retailer
Halfords has cut its dividend by a third to help fund a
multi-million pound investment programme, warning this would
keep earnings below last year’s level for the next two years.
Shares in the British company, up sharply in the past month,
slumped to a six-week low of 320 pence and were down 15 percent
at 336p by 1049 GMT.
LONDON, May 21 (Reuters) – Britain’s Royal Mail more than
doubled annual profit on the back of an online shopping boom,
providing a timely boost as it plans for a stock market listing
In a marked turnaround for a business that has been fighting
to adapt to a more competitive market and falling letter
volumes, Royal Mail reported adjusted operating profit of 403
million pounds ($613 million) in the year to March 31, against
152 million pounds a year earlier.
LONDON, May 21 (Reuters) – G4S, the world’s largest
security group, is replacing its chief executive after a series
of failures including a staffing fiasco at the 2012 London
Olympics culminated in a recent profit warning.
Nick Buckles, 52, who has led the company for eight years,
will be succeeded at the end of the month by Chief Financial
Officer Ashley Almanza, a former executive of oil and gas firm
BG Group who joined in March.
LONDON (Reuters) – Asda, Britain’s second-biggest grocer, said it would not take part in profit-squeezing promotions sweeping the industry, as it reported a pick-up in first-quarter sales.
“We’re not being distracted by gimmicks happening around the market,” Andy Clarke, chief executive of the British arm of United States retailer Wal-Mart (WMT.N: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz), told reporters on Thursday.
LONDON, May 16 (Reuters) – Asda, Britain’s second-biggest
grocer, said it would not take part in profit-squeezing
promotions sweeping the industry, as it reported a pick-up in
“We’re not being distracted by gimmicks happening around the
market,” Andy Clarke, chief executive of the British arm of
United States retailer Wal-Mart, told reporters on
LONDON, May 14 (Reuters) – Government proposals to ensure
British pub tenants are treated fairly by pub owners are based
on flawed and misleading evidence and could lead to more pub
closures, Enterprise Inns Plc said on Tuesday.
In April ministers outlined proposals for a statutory code
to stop pub companies abusing the “beer tie”, under which
tenanted pubs are forced to buy their beer from the firms who
hold their leases, often at above-market prices.
LONDON, May 2 (Reuters) – Hotelier Millennium & Copthorne
said full-year profit would fall below expectations in
2013 after warning the worst of a slowdown in its core Asian
market was not yet over.
M&C, with 100 hotels globally, on Thursday said trading in
Asia, where it makes 40 percent of its revenue, had suffered
from slower growth in China, falling tourist numbers in South
Korea and a host of problems in its biggest market, Singapore.
LONDON, April 29 (Reuters) – Britain said it expects to
appoint lead bank advisers for a possible stock market listing
of Royal Mail Group by the end of May, as it pushes on
with plans to privatise the firm.
In what would be one of the most significant privatisations
of a British asset since John Major’s Conservative government
sold the railways in the 1990s, Business Minister Michael Fallon
said on Monday a listing is the preferred method of sale for
government and that investor feedback so far had been positive.
LONDON, April 29 (Reuters) – Pest control to hygiene group
Rentokil Initial said it had sold its loss-making
courier arm City Link to private equity firm Better Capital,
exiting a business that has dragged on group performance for
Previously described as a “problem child” by Rentokil
bosses, and like an “albatross round the neck of management” by
analysts, City Link has racked up losses every year since 2007
despite efforts to turn it around.
LONDON, April 24 (Reuters) – British hotel and coffee shop
operator Whitbread is on the hunt for high street stores
in Paris as it looks to expand its ever-growing Costa Coffee
chain into France.
Costa has grown rapidly in Britain to 1,500 outlets as
demand grows for coffee on the go, and is set on increasing that
to 3,500 globally by 2016, with a 500-store target in China a