Company News Reporter, London
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Apr 15, 2014

Debenhams to cut back promotions after profit drop

LONDON, April 15 (Reuters) – Britain’s No.2 department store
operator, Debenhams, said it would cut back on
criticised promotions, improve its online business and boost
ranges with retailer tie-ups to try to reverse a slide in
profits.

The firm has endured a tough 12 months, issuing its second
profit warning in less than a year in December and losing its
finance chief after a long-held strategy of slashing prices
failed to boost its crucial Christmas sales.

Apr 10, 2014

Struggling Mothercare shares boosted by better Q4 trade

LONDON (Reuters) – British baby products retailer Mothercare (MTC.L: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) said on Thursday better fourth-quarter trading at home and overseas had put on track to hit annual profit forecasts, boosting its shares.

In Britain, which accounts for about 70 percent of its sales, Mothercare has pushed to close underperforming stores, revamp others and expand online amid fierce competition from Internet rivals and supermarkets.

Apr 10, 2014

Struggling Mothercare shares boosted by better fourth-quarter trade

LONDON (Reuters) – British baby products retailer Mothercare (MTC.L: Quote, Profile, Research) said on Thursday better fourth-quarter trading at home and overseas had put on track to hit annual profit forecasts, boosting its shares.

In Britain, which accounts for about 70 percent of its sales, Mothercare has pushed to close underperforming stores, revamp others and expand online amid fierce competition from Internet rivals and supermarkets.

Apr 10, 2014

Government allows G4S to bid for work again

LONDON (Reuters) – Security group G4S will again be considered for government contracts after ministers said on Wednesday they were satisfied with the firm’s efforts to overhaul itself following a series of damaging failures.

Last month G4S, the world’s biggest security group, agreed to repay 108.9 million pounds to the government after overcharging it on a contract to tag criminals. That mistake followed its failure to provide enough guards for the London Olympics in 2012.

Apr 9, 2014

Royal Mail warns over watchdog’s price hike probe

LONDON (Reuters) – Britain’s newly-privatised Royal Mail warned an investigation into a rival’s complaint over wholesale mail price rises would lead to a long period of uncertainty around the prices it charges other postal operators.

Royal Mail’s regulator Ofcom on Wednesday said it would investigate the complaint from Britain’s No.2 postal operator, TNT Post under its Competition Act powers, a process that can take up to two years.

Apr 9, 2014

Britain’s Royal Mail warns over watchdog’s price hike probe

LONDON, April 9 (Reuters) – Britain’s newly-privatised Royal
Mail warned an investigation into a rival’s complaint
over wholesale mail price rises would lead to a long period of
uncertainty around the prices it charges other postal operators.

Royal Mail’s regulator Ofcom on Wednesday said it would
investigate the complaint from Britain’s No.2 postal operator,
TNT Post under its Competition Act powers, a process that can
take up to two years.

Apr 9, 2014

Britain allows G4S to bid for work again

LONDON, April 9 (Reuters) – British security group G4S
will again be considered for government contracts after
ministers said on Wednesday they were satisfied with the firm’s
efforts to overhaul itself following a series of damaging
failures.

Last month G4S, the world’s biggest security group, agreed
to repay 108.9 million pounds to the government after
overcharging it on a contract to tag criminals. That mistake
followed its failure to provide enough guards for the London
Olympics in 2012.

Apr 8, 2014

British supermarket discount war not spooking suppliers

LONDON, April 8 (Reuters) – Supermarket discount wars have
long been the stuff of nightmares for grocery suppliers expected
to slash their own prices in turn, but this time around in
Britain many say they are sleeping just fine.

Tesco, Asda and Morrisons have
together pledged 2.4 billion pounds ($4 billion) in lower prices
to compete with fast-growing German-owned discount chains. But
many experts think an all-out price war is unlikely and for now
supermarkets are footing the bill themselves, not squeezing
their suppliers.

Apr 8, 2014

Sports Direct share price sinks after founder cuts stake

LONDON, April 8 (Reuters) – Shares in Sports Direct,
Britain’s biggest sporting goods retailer, fell by over 10
percent on Tuesday after its founder Mike Ashley cut his stake
and raised over 200 million pounds ($332 million).

The sell-off, which cuts Ashley’s stake by 4 percent to 57.7
percent, follows the surprise decision last week by the
remaining Sports Direct investors to oppose a proposed bonus
share scheme for Ashley worth 73 million pounds, the third time
such a payout plan has failed.

Apr 4, 2014

Under-fire McIlwee quits as Tesco finance boss

LONDON, April 4 (Reuters) – Tesco’s finance chief
Laurie McIlwee quit on Friday, delivering a fresh blow to CEO
Philip Clarke who is struggling to turn around the British-based
supermarket operator.

Announcing his decision just days before results that are
expected to show another decline in profits, McIlwee said he
would quit the board and resign after five years as CFO but stay
on long enough to hand over to a successor.

    • About Neil

      "I'm a company news reporter covering the retail and leisure sectors. Based in London I write on everything from the big retailers to fashion chains, hotels, drinks firms, pubs and coffee shops. I've previously covered the outsourcing sector and before that worked on Reuters sport for three years. You can follow me on Twitter @ReutersMaidment"
      Joined Reuters:
      2008
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