Below are the key morning press headlines, featuring the The Times, The Telegraph, The Daily Mail & more - see the full Press section here.
Britain’s tea drinkers are a dying breed as younger customers desert the traditional builder’s brew in favour of trendier alternatives, the owner of PG Tips has warned. A growing shift among younger consumers toward herbal tea and coffee means that PG Tips and Lipton maker is struggling to grow the brands in developed countries such as the UK and US. Finance boss Graeme Pitkethly said: “I drink five or six cups of builder’s tea a day, but unfortunately we are dying at a faster rate than generation Z and millennials are consuming it. “They might drink tea but they want to drink quite high-end, expensive products. They drink a lot of coffee.
Shares in retail property firm leapt the most in a decade yesterday, after the company accepted a £150m offer from South Africa’s Growthpoint Properties that will make the group its majority owner. The decision lifted C&R, which owns shopping centres including The Marlowes in Hemel Hempstead, to the top of the FTSE All-Share index. If the deal is passed, Growthpoint will hold just more than 51% of the company’s shares. C&R is currently sitting on a heavy debt pile, which the South African group hopes to cut.
has stepped up its overseas expansion with a $400 million takeover of Marshall Retail Group in the United States. The buyout will broadly double the size of the stationery retailer’s international travel business and follows its $198 million takeover of the US business Inmotion last October. Marshalls has 170 shops in North America, 59 of them inside airports, making $84 million in sales last year. Stephen Clarke said that his successor Carl Cowling, 46, was the architect of the deal. “It’s got his hard work and fingerprints all over it,” Mr Clarke, 51, said. “But if I were still here we would still be doing the deal because it is a fantastic acquisition and fits the strategy entirely.” Nick Bubb, a retail analyst, said the acquisition meant that Mr Clarke was “going out with a bang”.
A slowdown in consumer spending on home improvement has prompted a profit warning from , one of Britain’s biggest suppliers of building materials. Grafton said that annual profit would miss expectations in an unscheduled update that sent its shares closing more than 10% down. It said that third-quarter sales in the UK had been affected by “weak underlying demand fundamentals as households deferred discretionary spending on home improvement projects against the backdrop of increased economic uncertainty”. Consumer sentiment was weaker in Ireland, despite a more buoyant economy, causing a fall in demand in its merchanting and DIY markets.
unveiled a new tie-up with the phone giant, O2. As part of its 5G UK launch, O2’s customers will get a 12-month subscription to EVR’s MelodyVR platform, which lets users watch gigs and artists in virtual reality. For each O2 customer that takes advantage of the promotion, MelodyVR will receive an undisclosed fee, while O2 will also promote the app in six of its flagship stores.
is in advanced talks with the NHS to trial its app Bleepa at pilot sites. The encrypted messaging app allows doctors to send each other pictures of X-Rays and other scans. Doctors usually use WhatsApp to do this when diagnosing patients, leaving them vulnerable to lawsuits. The firm is also pondering other commercial opportunities for Bleepa, within and outside the NHS.
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Volex Chairman Nat Rothschild said: “For the first time, the higher-margin Complex Assemblies business made up the majority of our revenue in the first half of FY2020, in accordance with our strategy of repositioning Volex towards higher-margin value-added business.”
SP Angel research note on commodities and miners, featuring: Arkle Resources* (ARK LN) – Airborne geophysics highlights additional opportunities at Stonepark Avesoro Resources (ASO LN) – Operational challenges prompt further downgrade to production guidance BHP (BHP LN) - BHP name Mike Henry as new CEO Chaarat Gold* (CGH LN) - $5.8m equity raise Phoenix Copper* (PXC LN) – £850,000 fundraising to advance the Red Star project. Savannah Resources* (SAV LN) – Metallurgical results from Mina do Barroso lithium project
An initial 1,500 metres of drilling is planned at the the Bakassi Zone to test the depth-extension of mineralisation identified to date, including previous trenching intersection of up to 9 meters at 3.14 grammes per tonne gold.
"With the roll out of 5G wireless networks underway, the move to 'cable-free' TV is a logical step, re-establishing how customers access online entertainment. We are excited to be a part of this step change,” commented Anil Malhotra, Chief Marketing Officer at Bango.
The app benefits healthcare workers by allowing them to deal with virtual patients via their smartphone or headset -- the group believes the app could “dramatically improve outcomes” in low-resource where access to simulation training is limited or expensive.