|Bid||218.40 x 0|
|Ask||218.60 x 0|
|Day's range||213.00 - 219.70|
|52-week range||177.05 - 327.20|
|Beta (3Y monthly)||1.42|
|PE ratio (TTM)||24.58|
|Earnings date||7 Nov 2019|
|Forward dividend & yield||0.11 (5.13%)|
|1y target est||317.00|
British supermarket group Asda said shop floor workers have just over two weeks to sign-up to new employment contracts, first proposed in April, or face losing their jobs. Of Britain's big four grocers - market leader Tesco , Sainsbury's, Asda and Morrisons -Walmart owned Asda is the last to implement more flexible working contracts as it seeks productivity improvements in a brutally competitive market. Asda's new standardised contracts increase the base rate of pay for over 100,000 retail workers to 9 pounds ($11.58) per hour, plus premiums, while maintaining benefits including an annual bonus, share save scheme and staff discount.
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German-owned discount supermarket Lidl GB has vowed to spend 15 billion pounds ($19 billion) with British suppliers over the next five years, commiting to increase sales of local meat, poultry and fresh produce. Lidl and rival Aldi have changed the shape of the UK grocery sector, stealing market share from industry leader Tesco, Sainsbury's, Asda and Morrisons by offering cut-throat prices in no-frills stores. To deepen its relations with British suppliers, Lidl, part of the Schwarz retail group, said it would introduce longer-term contracts with suppliers to help them invest and expand.
* Brexit concerns have not translated into purchasing * Quarter of UK consumers considering stockpiling * UK grocery sales up 1.3% in 12 weeks to Oct. 6 * Sainsbury's only one of big four to see growth * Aldi and Lidl's combined market share now 14.1% (Adds detail) LONDON, Oct 15 (Reuters) - British consumers have not yet stockpiled groceries ahead of Brexit though they are considering doing so, market researcher Kantar said on Tuesday. It said a quarter of UK shoppers say they are thinking about stockpiling, but they seem to be waiting to see how the coming weeks play out.
At this time of year, Juan Colomina is preparing for the start of the harvest of thousands of tonnes of fruit and vegetables grown under plastic in southern Spain and exported to the world. This year he has an added complication - trying to work out which forms are needed to get crops of fresh produce like lettuce and tomatoes through French and British customs in the event that Britain leaves the European Union without a withdrawal agreement.
Consumer goods giant Unilever vowed to halve the amount of new plastic it uses over the next five years, by shifting to more recyclable and alternative materials and refillable options to meet consumer demand for less waste. The company, which sells Ben & Jerry's ice cream, Dove soap and Knorr soup, said it would achieve this target by cutting its use of plastic packaging by over 100,000 tonnes and accelerating its use of recycled plastic. The Anglo-Dutch firm currently uses more than 700,000 tonnes of virgin plastic - created using raw materials instead of recycled materials - each year and expects to halve that usage by 2025.
I think these two FTSE 100 (INDEXFTSE:UKX) dividend shares could offer long-term price appreciation potential.
When the little known Ken Murphy takes over next year as CEO of Tesco, Britain's biggest retailer, he will inherit something current boss Dave Lewis did not have the luxury of when he joined in 2014 - a strategy and a stable business. When former Unilever executive Lewis became CEO of Tesco on Sept. 1, 2014, the supermarket group was already reeling from a dramatic downturn in trading. Three weeks later, an accounting scandal plunged it into the biggest crisis in its history.
(Bloomberg Opinion) -- In the five years since Tesco Plc was plunged into the biggest crisis in its history, Dave Lewis, its chief executive officer, has executed an (almost) textbook turnaround of Britain’s biggest retailer.He’s now decided that his job is done and he will hand over the reins next year to Ken Murphy of Walgreens Boots Alliance Inc.“Drastic Dave” — a moniker Lewis picked up because of his cost-cutting zeal in a former job at Unilever Plc — took Tesco out of intensive care. He revived sales growth, restored profit, cut debt and reinstated the dividend. The shares are 18% higher than they were back in 2014, when Tesco announced a bombshell 250 million-pound ($307 million) profit black hole. That stock price increase is twice that of the FTSE 100 index.There’s still a vague sense of disappointment, though. One might have expected some Lewis initiatives, such as taking prices closer to those of the German-owned discount grocers Aldi and Lidl, to bear more fruit. While Tesco is managing to grind out incremental growth in an ever-more-competitive market, it’s hard to get too excited by that.Lewis did deliver on his key turnaround target: lifting the company’s operating margin to between 3.5% and 4% six months earlier than expected. So he’s making the wise move for a CEO of going out on a high note.But it’s curious that he didn’t appear to be in the running for two other high-profile CEO posts that have been filled recently, at the consumer goods giants Unilever Plc and Reckitt Benckiser Group Plc. Lewis doesn’t have another job to go to and plans to take some time off before thinking about his next move.The choice of replacement is certainly a surprise. Lewis’s natural successor was Charles Wilson, the popular ex-boss of Booker, which Tesco bought in 2018. However, he stepped back from running Tesco’s British arm last year due to illness. Murphy was joint chief operating officer at Walgreens’ British pharmacy chain Boots before being promoted at the American parent. So he does have experience in the fiercely competitive U.K. retail market.Still, he has no direct experience of the cutthroat grocery sector, which has been transformed by the price-slashing antics of Aldi and Lidl. This is Tesco’s greatest challenge. At least Murphy will benefit from the advice of Wilson, who still has a senior role at Tesco.While the supermarket giant has prospered from the weakness of its great rival J Sainsbury Plc, the latter appears to have gotten its act together lately. And while the British shopper has remained pretty immune to Brexit so far, a no-deal departure from the European Union might change that.It won’t be easy to balance these challenges against an investor base that’s expecting a special dividend or buybacks from next year. Already Tesco’s U.K. sales growth has slowed. That may reflect a broader deceleration across the grocery market, after a strong 2018, but a slowdown is a slowdown. Shareholders are naturally cautious about the management change, although the stock did rise 2% in a falling London market on Wednesday.At least Lewis didn’t hang around beyond his sell-by date, unlike so many other CEOs.To contact the author of this story: Andrea Felsted at email@example.comTo contact the editor responsible for this story: James Boxell at firstname.lastname@example.orgThis column does not necessarily reflect the opinion of the editorial board or Bloomberg LP and its owners.Andrea Felsted is a Bloomberg Opinion columnist covering the consumer and retail industries. She previously worked at the Financial Times.For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com/opinion©2019 Bloomberg L.P.
(Bloomberg Opinion) -- In the glossary of business jargon there’s a term beloved by financial analysts but that journalists find especially grating: the “equity story.”It’s the sort of non-speak that can be explained far more simply: Why should you invest in a given company? That’s something that WPP Plc Chief Executive Officer Mark Read, an operations guy, has yet to answer adequately when it comes to the firm he took over a year ago from Martin Sorrell, something of a finance wonk.The task should sit at the top of priorities for John Rogers, the retail executive appointed as WPP’s new finance chief on Tuesday. That’s not to say that Read hasn’t been busy since taking the helm of the world’s largest advertising holding company. He’s clinched deals to sell assets worth 3.6 billion pounds ($4.4 billion), merged divisions to cut costs and improve efficiency, and stanched some of the revenue declines in North America. The share price has recovered to outperform archrival Publicis Groupe SA since Read announced 2021 growth targets in December.But the London-based company’s shares are still trailing its other major peers — Omnicom Group, Interpublic Group and Dentsu Inc. — when compared to expectations for earnings a year out. Investors are hungry to understand just how WPP’s new guard will translate all of that action into solid, durable growth.Read’s predecessor Sorrell had a seemingly straightforward formula to deliver just that. He promised investors annual earnings per share growth of between 5% and 10%, a pledge he tended to keep until recent years. He did so with a personal recipe of strict targets for organic revenue growth, profitability improvements, stock buybacks and acquisitions and a little sugar on top, a 50% dividend payout ratio. The approach kept shareholders happy and the stock steadily ticking upwards for years.Echoing that formula isn’t realistic in the current era. A shift toward digital marketing on platforms such as Google and Facebook and the incursion of consultancies into the advertising market means dependable revenue growth is far harder to realize. And knuckling down on costs can make it yet harder still. In an attempt to keep the focus clear, Read changed WPP’s bonus policy to place greater emphasis on sales growth than profitability improvements.Rogers, who will join from U.K. grocer J Sainsbury Plc where he had been CFO for 6 years, has a difficult act to follow at WPP. Paul Richardson had a lower public profile than Sorrell, but he led WPP’s finance operations for 23 years. The firm generated an average return of 10% a year in that period.Rogers’s more recent background running Sainsbury’s Argos general-merchandise retail division, which it acquired in 2016, should serve him well, according to media consultant Alex DeGroote. It’s given him valuable experience integrating businesses and managing a vast property portfolio. But a lack of experience in the advertising industry and in North America mean he’s unlikely to be tasked with fixing WPP’s operations in the U.S. and Canada, where revenue declines have dragged down the rest of WPP.His main role will therefore be to help Read crystallize a realistic vision for the company that can reinvigorate investors. Optimism is currently muted: analysts’ average 12-month target price is just 8% above the level at which WPP is currently trading. If Read is making the necessary operational improvements, Rogers needs to help turn that into a better story.To contact the author of this story: Alex Webb at email@example.comTo contact the editor responsible for this story: Melissa Pozsgay at firstname.lastname@example.orgThis column does not necessarily reflect the opinion of the editorial board or Bloomberg LP and its owners.Alex Webb is a Bloomberg Opinion columnist covering Europe's technology, media and communications industries. He previously covered Apple and other technology companies for Bloomberg News in San Francisco.For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com/opinion©2019 Bloomberg L.P.
Advertising group WPP has poached John Rogers, the boss of Sainsbury's Argos business and previously seen as a frontrunner to be the British supermarket group's next CEO, as its new finance chief. Rogers had been seen by analysts as the favourite internal candidate to succeed Mike Coupe as chief executive of Sainsbury's in due course.
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WPP has appointed John Rogers, the boss of retailer Sainsbury's Argos, as its new finance director, to take over from the outgoing Paul Richardson in early 2020. Rogers has held a number of senior posts in Sainsbury's over the years, including being finance director of the supermarket from 2010 until 2016.
The chief executive of Britain's Sainsbury's has reaffirmed his commitment to leading the supermarket group, saying a major investor event on Wednesday was not a beauty contest for his potential replacement. Mike Coupe, CEO since 2014, has been under pressure since Britain's competition regulator in April blocked Sainsbury's 7.3 billion pound agreed bid for Walmart-owned rival Asda. Then in August, in response to a newspaper report, Sainsbury's reiterated that Coupe had the full support of investors and the board and said it was not talking to internal candidates about succession planning for him.