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Jul 22, 2013

Demand healthy for Royal Mail selloff, UK minister says

LONDON (Reuters) – The planned flotation of Britain’s postal service is drawing healthy demand from domestic and overseas investors, building momentum for an autumn sale, Business Minister Michael Fallon told Reuters on Monday.

Overseeing the country’s biggest privatization in decades, Fallon said he hoped a pay deal with trade unions and Royal Mail would soon be sealed to help ease investor concerns.

Jul 18, 2013

Sports Direct rethinks founder’s payout, pays staff bumper bonus

LONDON, July 18 (Reuters) – Sports Direct, Britain’s
biggest sporting goods retailer, scrapped plans to pay its
billionaire founder Mike Ashley a bonus worth some 60 million
pounds on Thursday, saying it would look for other ways to
reward him for its rapid growth.

Ashley, who founded the company in 1982, has not taken a
salary since Sports Direct floated in 2007, during which time
its share price has doubled. He has also provided significant
free advertising for it through his ownership of English Premier
League soccer club Newcastle United.

Jul 11, 2013

UK puts G4S and Serco under review after tagging fiasco

LONDON, July 11 (Reuters) – Britain on Thursday placed all
contracts held by outsourcing firms G4S and Serco
under review after an audit showed they charged for
tagging criminals who were either dead, in prison or never
tagged in the first place.

The news, which wiped millions of pounds off the firms’
value, was the latest blow in a torrid spell for G4S which makes
around 10 percent of its 7.5 billion pounds turnover from
British government work.

Jul 11, 2013

Britain to review all G4S and Serco contracts

LONDON (Reuters) – Britain on Thursday launched a review into all contracts held by outsourcing firms G4S (GFS.L: Quote, Profile, Research) and Serco (SRP.L: Quote, Profile, Research) after an audit found evidence they had charged for tagging criminals who were either dead, in prison or never tagged in the first place.

The government said Serco had agreed to co-operate with an audit of all its contracts but that it had asked the Serious Fraud Office to consider whether an investigation was required into G4S after the firm declined to allow a further review.

Jul 11, 2013

Primark lifts sales for upbeat AB Foods

LONDON, July 11 (Reuters) – Associated British Foods
is seeing signs of improving consumer confidence in Britain,
with a strong performance from its Primark discount clothing
chain helping to lift third-quarter sales by 8 percent.

While many British retailers have struggled as consumers
fret over job security and squeezed incomes, Primark’s low
prices are pulling in cost-conscious customers who are at last
beginning to loosen their purse strings.

Jul 11, 2013

Government woos Royal Mail workers with free shares

LONDON (Reuters) – The government will list a majority stake in the Royal Mail postal service on the stock market in the next nine months, promising free shares for workers fiercely opposed to the country’s biggest privatisation in around 20 years.

Analysts expect the initial public offering to value Royal Mail, which traces its roots to a service founded by King Henry VIII in 1516, at 2-3 billion pounds, so selling a majority stake could raise over 1 billion pounds to help the country’s stretched finances.

Jul 10, 2013

UK to list Royal Mail, woos workers with free shares

LONDON, July 10 (Reuters) – Britain will list a majority
stake in the Royal Mail postal service on the stock market in
the next nine months, promising free shares for workers fiercely
opposed to the country’s biggest privatisation in around 20
years.

Analysts expect the initial public offering (IPO) to value
Royal Mail, which traces its roots to a service founded by King
Henry VIII in 1516, at 2-3 billion pounds ($3-$4.5 billion), so
selling a majority stake could raise over 1 billion pounds to
help the country’s stretched finances.

Jun 28, 2013

Royal Mail avoids staff boycott, for now

LONDON (Reuters) – Britain’s Royal Mail said it had received an undertaking from the postal workers’ union not to induce its staff to boycott competitor mail, avoiding a potential headache ahead of its forthcoming privatisation.

Royal Mail had sought an injunction against a possible boycott after members of the Communication Workers Union (CWU) voted 92 percent in favour of supporting such action in a consultative ballot earlier this month.

Jun 28, 2013

Britain’s Royal Mail avoids staff boycott, for now

LONDON, June 28 (Reuters) – Britain’s Royal Mail said it had
received an undertaking from the postal workers’ union not to
induce its staff to boycott competitor mail, avoiding a
potential headache ahead of its forthcoming privatisation.

Royal Mail had sought an injunction against a possible
boycott after members of the Communication Workers Union (CWU)
voted 92 percent in favour of supporting such action in a
consultative ballot earlier this month.

Jun 26, 2013

Wimbledon courts under scrutiny after ‘black day’

LONDON (Reuters) – Second seed Victoria Azarenka called on Wimbledon organisers to examine the state of the grass courts after joining a growing list of players to withdraw from the grand slam because of injury on Wednesday.

The Belarusian fell badly in her match on Monday on what she called a slippery Court One and her knee failed to recover in time for Wednesday’s second-round clash with Flavia Pennetta.

    • 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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