Company News Reporter, London
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Jan 29, 2014

Mulberry shares plunge on major profit warning

LONDON, Jan 29 (Reuters) – British luxury fashion group
Mulberry warned its annual profit would be substantially
below forecasts due to heavy Christmas discounting in Britain
and weak demand in South Korea, wiping more than a quarter off
its shares.

The Bayswater and Alexa handbags maker said on Wednesday
total retail sales for the 17 weeks to Jan. 25 were down 3
percent on a year ago, which included a 7 percent decline for
the crucial 8 weeks to Jan. 25 Christmas period.

Jan 28, 2014

Carpetright warns on profit again as Netherlands woes deepen

LONDON, Jan 28 (Reuters) – Britain’s biggest floor coverings
retailer Carpetright Plc has warned on its yearly
profit for the second time in almost four months, as
deteriorating trade in the Netherlands offset an improving
performance in the UK.

The company, whose boss Darren Shapland quit after October’s
profit warning, said on Tuesday an expected loss at its Dutch
business meant it now anticipated full-year underlying pretax
profit to be between 7 million pounds ($11.6 million) and 8
million.

Jan 26, 2014

Brompton Bicycle shows British manufacturing how to shift up a gear

LONDON, Jan 26 (Reuters) – Loan refusal letters and
retailers’ rejections frame the walls of the Brompton Bicycle
factory, a reminder of the obstacles the firm has overcome to
establish itself as the UK’s top bike-maker, selling 45,000 a
year around the world.

Brompton’s success lies partly in its cool – the company
cashed in on a trendy ‘Made in Britain’ tag, and the fact that
its bikes fold up lends the label a geeky chic as well as
popular practicality.

Jan 22, 2014

Pub chain JD Wetherspoon posts strong second-quarter sales rise

LONDON, Jan 22 (Reuters) – British pub chain JD Wetherspoon
posted a strong second-quarter sales rise and said it
would continue investing in its business and new pubs at the
expense of margins.

The firm, which has grown to over 900 pubs on the back of
popular food and drinks deals, will open between 40 and 50 new
pubs in 2013/14, with similar plans for future years and has
been investing in IT, staff and training in preparation.

Jan 21, 2014

British soapmaker Cussons spooks investors with currency hit

LONDON, Jan 21 (Reuters) – British soap and shampoo maker PZ
Cussons said its first-half performance was hurt by weak
emerging market currencies that showed no signs of improving,
prompting a fall in its shares as some analysts cut their
full-year forecasts.

Cussons, the maker of Imperial Leather soaps, nevertheless
posted a 7.9 percent rise in pretax profit to 47.6 million
pounds ($78.16 million) for the six months to Nov. 30 – in line
with expectations – on sales up 4.1 percent to 431.8 million.

Jan 16, 2014

Online demand, tablets and cheap fashion lift UK retail

LONDON, Jan 16 (Reuters) – British retailers who were able
to tap consumers’ growing love of online shopping and demand for
must-have tablet computers, gadgets and cheap fashion enjoyed
robust trading in an otherwise tough Christmas for the industry.

A raft of trading updates on Thursday showed companies
including Dixons Retail, Europe’s No. 2 electricals
retailer by revenue, Home Retail, Britain’s biggest
household goods group, and online-only grocer Ocado
reported strong sales growth over the key festive period.

Jan 13, 2014

Sports Direct seeks Debenhams links after stock swoop

LONDON, Jan 13 (Reuters) – Britain’s Sports Direct
has bought close to a 5 percent stake in Debenhams,
raising the possibility of the troubled department store group
selling some of the value retailer’s brands in its stores.

Debenhams shares, which hit a 22-month low of 71 pence after
a New Year’s Eve profit warning, climbed as much as 6.5 percent
on Monday after Sports Direct said it had bought a 4.63 percent
stake and wants to explore how the groups can work together at
an operational level.

Jan 9, 2014

Poor Christmas at M&S and Tesco ratchets up pressure on CEOs

LONDON, Jan 9 (Reuters) – Tesco and Marks & Spencer
, the biggest names in British retail, posted heavy falls
in sales in the run up to Christmas, showing no sign of their
much vaunted turnarounds and ratcheting up pressure on their
chief executives.

The 130-year-old M&S reported its 10th consecutive quarter
of falling clothing sales and cut its margin guidance after
fierce discounting by rivals forced Britain’s biggest clothing
retailer to slash prices in the week before Christmas.

Jan 8, 2014

Mothercare shares plunge after warning of profit shortfall

LONDON, Jan 8 (Reuters) – Mother and baby products retailer
Mothercare has warned that full-year profit would reach
only half of what analysts had expected, after record Christmas
discounting and a drop in visitors to its stores hit sales and
margins.

The surprise statement sent Mothercare shares down 30
percent, wiping 112 million pounds ($183 million) off its stock
market value and adding pressure on Chief Executive Simon
Calver, who is trying to restore the UK division to profit in
the face of fierce competition from online rivals and
supermarkets.

Jan 8, 2014

Domino’s Pizza shares firm after sales surge tops forecasts

LONDON (Reuters) – Domino’s Pizza (DOM.L: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz), Britain’s biggest pizza delivery company, has posted a surge in fourth-quarter sales, steadying its shares which had been rattled by executive exits and a costly plan to expand in Germany.

Domino’s shares had dropped 20 percent in six months after its German operations suffered higher than anticipated losses and the company surprised investors last month by saying its chief Lance Batchelor would quit in April to join travel and insurance group Saga.

    • 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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