Evening Standard 15/04/19 - Vox Markets | Vox Markets

Evening Standard 15/04/19

Activist investor Bramson launches major broadside at Barclays (BARC) bosses. The row between Barclays and Ed Bramson ramped up another notch on monday when the rebel investor attacked the make-up of the board and questioned the competence of incoming chairman Nigel Higgins. Bramson, a corporate raider who specialises in taking stakes in underperforming companies and agitating for change, is seeking a seat on the board as he pushes his plan for Barclays to ditch all or part of its investment bank. While the chances of him securing a seat are low — few investors have backed him — the continuing weakness of the Barclays share price is making him hard to ignore.

IWG offloads its Japanese offices arm in £320m deal. IWG (IWG), the world’s biggest serviced-offices firm, on Monday agreed to sell its Japanese arm for £320 million, marking the first in a string of planned international disposals. The FTSE 250 firm’s shift of focus to being a franchiser rather than a landlord, kicked off today with a deal to sell 130 co-working office sites to Tokyo-listed property firm TKP Corporation. The Japanese business contributed £94.4 million to IWG’s revenues in 2018. TKP will get the rights to use IWG’s brand names including Regus, Spaces and OpenOffice. IWG will also be paid ongoing fees for providing franchise services, including tech and marketing.

Investors give Rio Tinto’s Arizona cash plan the cold shoulder. Investors on Monday chose not to dig deep into their pockets for Rio Tinto (RIO). They ditched the mining giant, seemingly unimpressed by its new plans to invest another $302 million (£231 million) into a long-running US copper project. The firm said the money for the Resolution Copper scheme in Arizona will be used for additional drilling, studies and infrastructure improvements. Rio Tinto chief executive JS Jacques said: “The rise of electric vehicles, battery storage, new transmission technology and other green energy innovations are highly copper intensive. “We need to prepare now to meet this future demand. Resolution will be well positioned to provide North American manufacturers the copper that is essential to their products.” The City didn’t look quite so enthusiastic about the funding announcement, which brings the total spent by Rio Tinto and its partners on the project up to over $2 billion since 2004.

Energean Oil and Gas (ENOG) said it has made a “significant” gas discovery at its Karish North exploration well, offshore Israel. The update was welcomed by the Israeli minister of energy, Dr Yuval Steinitz, who said: “I congratulate Energean for the significant amount of natural gas discovered in Karish North. I am sure that further discoveries will follow.”

Acacia Mining (ACA) fell 4.68p to 187.32p. The miner said gold production for the first quarter at its North Mara mine in Tanzania was 66,324 ounces, down 14% from last year. The firm has been grappling with a long-running tax dispute in the country.

Immotion Group (IMMO), which produces virtual reality experiences for shopping centres and theme parks, last month released its latest short film: Swimming with Humpback Whales. It said it has been appointed to install immersive experiences which feature the video, which allows viewers a close-up look at whales migrating from Antarctica, into two major US aquariums in Arizona and Connecticut.

The chairman of the Emirates airline group has invested £534,000 in AIM-listed MX Oil (MXO). In total £680,000 was raised through a share placing, with Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum becoming a holder of 29.86%. The natural resources investment group’s shares fell 6% to 0.052p.

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Mentioned in this post

ACA
Acacia Mining
BARC
Barclays
ENOG
Energean Oil and Gas
IMMO
Immotion Group
IWG
IWG
MXO
MX Oil
RIO
Rio Tinto