LONDON, July 30 (Reuters) – Britain’s Domino’s Pizza
has slowed expansion plans for its fledgling German business, as
higher wage and training costs there meant the unit would break
even as much as two years later than forecast.
Shares in Britain’s biggest pizza delivery firm dropped 7.4
percent to 555.5 pence at 0828 GMT, leading the fallers on the
FTSE 250 index of mid-sized companies and carrying the stock to
a near four-month low.
LONDON (Reuters) – Reckitt Benckiser’s (RB.L: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) focus on health and hygiene products is paying off, the consumer goods group said on Monday, as demand for brands such as Durex condoms and Dettol disinfectants helped it to nudge up its annual sales forecast.
The British firm, which also makes Cillit Bang cleaners and Finish dishwasher tablets, has been concentrating on high-margin health and hygiene products to take advantage of ageing Western populations and rising incomes in emerging markets.
LONDON, July 24 (Reuters) – Britain’s JD Wetherspoon
nudged up its profit guidance and said it would accelerate new
pub openings next year thanks to a recovery in margins and a
more upbeat mood among customers.
The company’s 800 pubs have helped cash-strapped consumers
ride out the downturn with promotions like curry clubs and ‘beer
and a burger’ bargains. Having planned to open 20-25 sites in
the next fiscal year, 2013/14, it said on Wednesday it was now
aiming for 30.
LONDON, July 23 (Reuters) – Premier Foods, the maker
of Mr Kipling cakes and Hovis bread, said it expected full-year
results to be at the top end of forecasts after cost cuts helped
the group to report a 50 percent leap in first-half trading
The British food producer also said on Tuesday it expected
full-year free cash flow to be between 50 and 70 million pounds,
slightly higher than earlier estimates, which would help reduce
year-end net debt to 840-860 million pounds ($1.32 billion) from
890 mln at the end of June.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.