|Bid||0.00 x 0|
|Ask||0.00 x 0|
|Day's Range||5.07 - 5.16|
|52 Week Range||5.04 - 8.22|
|Beta (3Y Monthly)||1.22|
|PE Ratio (TTM)||106.88|
|Forward Dividend & Yield||0.36 (6.94%)|
|1y Target Est||9.65|
British stores group Marks & Spencer takes a big step into online retail, paying out £750 million to own half of online grocer Ocado's UK retail business. Francis Maguire reports.
(Bloomberg) -- Ocado Group Plc shares surged after the U.K. online grocer reassured investors that its strategy is on track despite a fire that leveled one of its warehouses earlier this year.The company maintained its full-year sales guidance even as it estimates the blaze in February will cut earnings by 15 million pounds ($18.8 million). The shares gained as much as 7.7% in London, the most in more than four months.Though the incident at the automated facility in Andover, England, trimmed retail sales in the first half, the company still expects full-year growth of as much as 15%. Ocado has removed some decorative parts from robots after saying an electrical fault that ignited a plastic lid on one of the machines caused the fire.“We’ve taken some steps to dramatically reduce the effects of it happening again,” Chief Executive Officer Tim Steiner said by phone.The company said it made further progress in its shift from e-commerce sales to becoming more of a software and robotics platform. Revenue from grocery partners that have licensed its technology rose by more than one-third from a year earlier. Ocado has struck technology deals with the likes of Kroger Co. in the U.S., and Steiner said the company is eyeing additional agreements in other countries.‘Encouraging Execution’“Qualitative updates are encouraging,” Numis analysts wrote in a note, pointing to “encouraging execution on current solutions deals.”Ocado formed a joint venture with Marks & Spencer Group Plc in February to operate food deliveries in the U.K. and recently invested in non-grocery ventures including automated meal preparation and vertical farming.Another U.K. partner, Wm Morrison Supermarkets Plc, agreed to free some of its warehouse capacity to help Ocado after the Andover fire. This will slow revenue growth in its solutions business, given the loss of fees and higher fixed costs, Ocado said. Morrison also loosened its pact with the online grocer in May to strengthen its partnership with rival Amazon.com Inc.To contact the reporter on this story: Ellen Milligan in London at email@example.comTo contact the editors responsible for this story: Eric Pfanner at firstname.lastname@example.org, Thomas MulierFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com©2019 Bloomberg L.P.
(Bloomberg Opinion) -- It’s slim pickings in the bond market at the moment. What else can fund managers do but fall into line with their index, close their eyes and buy?A pervasive fear of missing out on even the slightest hint of yield has created an unseemly buying frenzy that has swept across Europe, touching government bonds and making its way down the credit spectrum to high-yielding corporate debt. It's become such a battle for investors to get hold of any form of fixed-income asset that yields on the bonds of France, Belgium, Austria and Sweden at a range of maturities, even beyond 10 years, have turned negative. U.K. retailer Marks & Spencer Group Plc, currently battling to revive earnings and figure out how to get people to buy its clothes, felt the FOMO. On Wednesday its 250 million pound ($314.3 million) eight-year bond was six times oversubscribed, and the spread on offer dropped 35 basis points from initial price talk to pricing. The backdrop to this is an expectation that the European Central Bank will push its deposit rate ever more negative and restart quantitative easing in the autumn to battle the bloc’s worsening economic weakness. Good news for bond returns. But there’s much more to the latest plunge in yields. The fund managers who, all year, had sat on the sidelines in the belief that they could not get any lower are now finding that their performance has fallen behind. Now, they have to catch up, and sharpish. This tectonic shift in fixed income is forcing them to make purchases that in the cold light of day defy logic. Underperforming in a bull market is not a good look. One important law of financial logic – if you lend money for longer, you should see a higher return – has been broken. Long bond yields around the world have dropped below the official overnight rates of central banks. The time value of money has essentially disappeared.The U.S. 30-year bond, for example, yields 2.47%, less than the 2.5% upper bound of the Federal Reserve's benchmark rate. It’s even worse in Europe. As my colleague Dani Burger puts it, the continent has gone beyond Japanification, now that a number of EU countries have a higher percentage of negative-yielding debt. What sort of world is it when the Greek 10-year is within 10 basis points of U.S Treasuries? If you thought 1.17% was crazy for a yield on Austria’s reopening of its 100-year bond, it now yields 1.06%. The evident desire of both the European Commission and the Italian government to avoid a summer row over government spending limits opened the floodgates for investors to pile into the last liquid market with any yield to speak of. The Italian curve has shifted so far down that two-year yields have returned to zero for the first time since the formation of the current populist government in May last year created a fixed-income drama. Fund managers who, with ample justification, had been underweight Italy have had to cave in. The year is half over, and there’s no other way to keep performance from being destroyed other than capitulation against their better judgment. Where does it stop? It doesn’t look like it will anytime soon. The consummate Euro-federalist Christine Lagarde will deliver continuity when she takes over from Mario Draghi as ECB president on Nov. 1. "Whatever it takes" is alive and well.Fund managers have to strap on duration and secure any yield they can while it still sort of exists. Just try not to think about how all those pensions will get paid in the future.To contact the author of this story: Marcus Ashworth at email@example.comTo contact the editor responsible for this story: Jennifer Ryan at firstname.lastname@example.orgThis column does not necessarily reflect the opinion of the editorial board or Bloomberg LP and its owners.Marcus Ashworth is a Bloomberg Opinion columnist covering European markets. He spent three decades in the banking industry, most recently as chief markets strategist at Haitong Securities in London.For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com/opinion©2019 Bloomberg L.P.
(Bloomberg Opinion) -- Carrefour SA, Europe's largest retailer, may be the latest Western company to pull back from China. It’s unlikely to be the last.On Monday, the hypermarket operator said it would sell 80% of its China business for 4.8 billion yuan ($699 million) in cash to Suning.com, the Chinese retailer backed by Alibaba Group Holding Ltd. Carrefour will retain a 20% stake. Over the past few years, the French company’s plans to shrink its China footprint has been one of the worst-kept secrets in banking. Though Carrefour sold the business pretty cheaply – with a valuation of 0.2 times 2018 sales, compared with the industry average of 0.84, according to Citigroup Inc. – loosening its ties to the mainland may be a smart move, whatever the price. With sales in the country flagging and losses piling up, the deal comes as China’s macroeconomic picture is also darkening.Yet the key challenge for Carrefour preceded the trade war. In recent years, online-only players such as Alibaba have been piling pressure on brick-and-mortar operations, with Tesco Plc, Best Buy Co. and Marks & Spencer Plc each announcing plans to pull back from the mainland market. Carrefour’s share of the country’s hypermarket segment fell to 4.6% last year from 8.2% in 2009, Citi writes.(1) That’s a problem in a country with one of the world’s biggest rates of e-commerce penetration. China's online retail sales reached 3.86 trillion yuan in the first five months of this year, accounting for more than one-fifth of the country's total purchases of consumer goods, according to a recent report by the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences. To make matters worse, foreign brands no longer have the cachet they once enjoyed – at least in low-end consumer goods. In a survey last year, Credit Suisse AG said that Chinese consumers preferred domestic purveyors in categories like food and drinks and home appliances. With the trade war whipping up nationalist fervor, that trend may accelerate: The bank's latest poll of shoppers 18 to 29 years old showed that 41% preferred phones made by Huawei Technologies Co., up from 28%, while interest for Apple Inc.’s products fell to 28% from 40%.For many firms, ceding control to a local partner is probably the best way forward. Carrefour appears to be borrowing a page from the playbook of McDonald’s Corp., which sold 80% of its China business in 2017 to a tie-up between state giant Citic Group Corp. and private equity firm Carlyle Group LP.Or consider Walmart Inc., which sold its e-commerce delivery site to JD.com Inc. in 2016 in exchange for a stake in the Chinese retailer. The U.S. firm now aims to open 40 of its Sam’s Club stores in China by 2020. Costco Wholesale Corp. is also betting on China’s appetite for bulk buying, with plans to open its first bricks-and-mortar store in August. Whether Costco can pull this off without a local partner remains unclear.What is clear is that Carrefour won’t be the last retailer to rethink its China strategy. Germany's Metro AG is also looking to sell its $1.5 billion Chinese business. At a time when Chinese acquisitions overseas have dried up, bankers at least can thank Western firms for managing to drum up some business from the mainland. (1) The bank citesEuromonitor International research.To contact the author of this story: Nisha Gopalan at email@example.comTo contact the editor responsible for this story: Rachel Rosenthal at firstname.lastname@example.orgThis column does not necessarily reflect the opinion of the editorial board or Bloomberg LP and its owners.Nisha Gopalan is a Bloomberg Opinion columnist covering deals and banking. She previously worked for the Wall Street Journal and Dow Jones as an editor and a reporter.For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com/opinion©2019 Bloomberg L.P.
British retailer Marks & Spencer's pension scheme has transferred a total of 1.4 billion pounds ($1.77 billion) in liabilities to two insurance groups Pension Insurance Corporation (PIC) and Phoenix, the insurers said on Thursday. British companies are increasingly offloading risks linked to their pension schemes to specialist insurance companies, partly because of increased life expectancy. PIC is insuring 900 million pounds in liabilities of the 10 billion pound Marks & Spencer Pension Scheme in its first transaction with the scheme, it said in a statement.
By James Davey LONDON (Reuters) - Marks & Spencer asked to be judged on how fast it is changing as much as its financial results on Wednesday, as the British clothing and food retailer reported a third ...
The main index, whose companies earn more than two-thirds of their profit from abroad, ended 0.1% higher, while the more domestically-focused FTSE 250 slipped 0.7%. A slump in sterling lifted internationally-exposed companies GlaxoSmithKline, Unilever and AstraZeneca, the biggest boosts to the FTSE 100. Stocks most sensitive to the any increased risk of a hard Brexit stumbled after multiple media reported rumours May's ministers could oust her in a row over her latest deal to exit the European Union.
Profit at Marks & Spencer is expected to fall for the third year in a row next week, with underlying sales poised to slip as the British retailer works through a painful "transformation plan". M&S set out on its latest turnaround, which follows a decade of failed reinventions, shortly after retail veteran Archie Norman joined as chairman in 2017 to work alongside Steve Rowe, who became chief executive in 2016 and has been with the company for almost three decades. M&S wants to make at least a third of its clothing and home sales online by 2022 and as part of its transition struck a 1.5 billion pound online food joint venture with Ocado in February, giving it a home delivery service from September 2020 at the latest.
In February we wrote about the six major indices that can be used to help track the performance of securities on OTC Markets. For this article, we’re going to look a little closer at one of those indices—the ...
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Britain's Marks and Spencer and Ocado launched an online food joint venture on Wednesday, belatedly giving M&S a home-delivery service while netting $1 billion for its fast-growing technology providing partner. M&S, Britain's best-known stores group, has lagged rivals in tapping into Britain's fastest growing grocery area, which industry researcher IGD expects to expand by 52 percent over the next five years to 17.3 billion pounds. Under the deal, Ocado's retail arm will become a joint venture with M&S, which will pay 750 million pounds ($1 billion) for its half share.
European shares fell in early deals on Wednesday, snapping a three-day winning streak amid growing India-Pakistan tensions, and a warning from Beiersdorf hammered consumer staples stocks while Air France-KLM and Marks & Spencer sank. The pan-European STOXX 600 index closed down 0.3 percent, having touched its highest level since the beginning of October on Tuesday.
British high street chain Marks & Spencer (M&S) is in talks with Ocado to form a joint venture that would give M&S a full online food delivery service for the first time, sending shares in both companies surging on Tuesday. Britain's best known store group and the online supermarket pioneer released short statements confirming discussions after London's Evening Standard newspaper said M&S was set to pay ˜˜£800-£900 million for a 50 percent stake in a combined online retail business. One source with knowledge of the situation indicated the cost to M&S would be lower.
Ocado Group Plc, which said its pretax loss on Tuesday surged, wants to extricate itself from at least part of the U.K. grocery business. It’s not hard to see why the company’s CEO, Tim Steiner, would want to move away from the daily grind of online grocery to concentrate on the whizzy technology arm. It is not clear what form a transaction would take, but one option would be for M&S to provide some of the food sold by Ocado once the latter’s contract with Waitrose expires in September 2020.
British online supermarket Ocado said on Tuesday investment in its partnership deals would hit short-term profits, while remaining tight-lipped about media reports of tie-up talks with Marks & Spencer. The firm's shares have nearly doubled over the last year on the back of four major overseas partnership deals - the biggest of which was signed last May with U.S. supermarket chain Kroger. Last week media reports said Ocado was in talks over a possible tie-up with Marks & Spencer (M&S), Britain's best-known retailer.
The boss of Ocado, the online supermarket and technology group, declined to comment on media reports that it is in talks with Marks & Spencer regarding a possible tie-up. "We're in the business of talking to retailers, we're constantly talking to different retailers all around the world about opportunities we may have with them," Ocado Chief Executive Tim Steiner told reporters on Tuesday. The reports regarding M&S have centred on the group agreeing a supply and distribution agreement with Ocado.