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UK market update – Next raises guidance, Unilever shortlists bidders for tea unit

Stock MarketsSep 29, 2021 07:38
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© Reuters.

By Samuel Indyk

Investing.com – At 07:33BST, FTSE 100 futures are trading higher by 0.2% at 7,013.

In FX markets, GBP/USD is trading at 1.3553, EUR/GBP is trading at 0.8623. The US Dollar Index is down 0.1%.

Today’s calendar highlights include UK mortgage approvals and consumer credit, Eurozone consumer confidence, US pending home sales, and weekly crude oil inventory data.

Stocks

Next (LON:NXT) - H1 brand full price sales up 8.8% versus 2019. Profit before tax up 5.9% on 2019 to £347 million. Full price sales in last eight weeks up 20% versus 2019, materially exceeding company expectations. Increasing full price sales guidance for rest of year to be up 10% on 2019. Expects profit before tax of £800 million, £36 million ahead of previous guidance.

Unilever (LON:ULVR) - Has reportedly shortlisted at least four bidders for its tea unit which could fetch £4 billion. Bidders are said to include CVC Capital Partners, Carlyle, Advent International, and a consortium comprising Cinven and the Abu Dhabi Investment Authroity. (Sky News)

Morrisons (LON:MRW) - An auction procedure for Morrisons will take place on 2nd October to determine the winning bidder as neither the CD&R offer nor the Fortress offer, are final. Each of Morrisons, Fortress and CD&R has agreed to the terms of the auction procedure. 

AstraZeneca (LON:AZN) - Alexion has exercised its option to acquire all remaining equity in Caelum Biosciences. Alexion (NASDAQ:ALXN) will pay Caelum the agreed option exercise price of approximately $150 million, with the potential for additional payments of up to $350 million upon achievement of regulatory and commercial milestones.

Abrdn (LON:ABDN) - Has sold 10.65 million shares in HDFC Asset Management Company for an average price of INR 2,873.79 which will result in receiving approximately INR 27,019 million (£268 million), net of taxes and expenses.

SSE (LON:SSE) - SSE Renewables signs agreement with Japan’s Pacifico Energy to create a joint ownership company to pursue offshore wind energy development projects in Japan. SSE Renewable will buy an 80% interest in an offshore wind development platform from Pacifico for $208 million, of which $30 million is deferred. Separately, the company said it expects to report adjusted earnings per share in the range of 7.5p to 10p for the half-year. SSE expects to recommend a full-year dividend of 80 pence plus RPI inflation.

BT (LON:BT) - The company is facing a legal bill of up to £600 million with almost 2.5 million customers potentially receiving up to £500 each over claims it overcharged them for their landline telephone services.

SSP Group (LON:SSPG) - Q4 revenue expected to be circa 47% of 2019 levels. Group is expected to deliver positive EBITDA in Q4 and broadly break-even for the second half of the year. Base case scenario of a return to pre-Covid levels of like-for-like revenue and EBITDA margins by 2024 remains unchanged. Current planning assumption is for a slightly slower recovery in sales during FY 2022.

Network International Holdings (LON:NETW) - Completed acquisition of DPO Group. Continues to expect double-digit ROCE from the acquisition within three years from completion. 2021 financial guidance remains unchanged.

Anglo American (LON:AAL) - Upgraded to Outperform from Sector Perform at RBC.

Blue Prism (LON:PRSMB) - Upgraded to Buy from Hold at HSBC.

Lloyds (LON:LLOY) - Upgraded to Neutral from Sell at Goldman Sachs (NYSE:GS).

IAG (LON:ICAG) - Upgraded to Buy from Hold at Deutsche Bank (DE:DBKGn).

UK market update – Next raises guidance, Unilever shortlists bidders for tea unit
 

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Ella Eddison
Ella Eddison Sep 29, 2021 9:35
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