Maitland Morning Monitor – Friday 21 April 2017

21st April 2017

Market Information

The FTSE 100 is expected to open higher for the first time time this week, along with most other main European markets.

In London chief executive pay is under pressure, giving the first indications the so-called "shareholder spring" may be having some effect on remuneration of Britain's bosses.

In the news

  • ‘Terror’ shooting on the Champs-Elysees
  • BHP pressed to spin off oil division
  • M&S plan to shut stores sparks high street anger

Top Financial Announcements

* Maitland Client

Reckitt Benckiser Group PLC Q1 2017 Trading Update
  • Like-for-like sales remained relatively flat at £2.64bn, with reported sales climbing 15% in the three months to March.
  • The acquisition of Mead Johnson remains on track for completion by the end of Q3.
  • Rakesh Kapoor, CEO, said: “Our Q1 results are in line with expectations as macro conditions remain challenging. Against this backdrop our underlying business remains strong. The acquisition of Mead Johnson, to create a global leader in consumer health, is progressing well and we expect completion by the end of Q3. We have commenced a strategic review of our Food business as we continue our focus on portfolio optimisation. We remain very confident that the strategic direction we are pursuing will continue to drive shareholder value.”
Hammerson PLC Hammerson signs £360 Revolving Credit Facility
  • Hammerson plc announces the successful syndication and signing of a £360 million unsecured Revolving Credit Facility (“RCF”) at an initial margin of 90 basis points with a syndicate of fourteen international banks.  The facility has a maturity of five years which may be extended to a maximum of seven years.
  • Timon Drakesmith, CFO, said: “This new credit facility is the latest milestone in our journey to reduce Hammerson’s cost of debt by refinancing in an attractive funding environment.  I am particularly delighted to welcome five new banks into our relationship group and appreciate the support from major institutions from Asia, US and Europe.”
SNC-Lavalin Group* Recommended Cash Acquisition of WS Atkins plc by SNC-Lavalin
  • The boards of directors of SNC-Lavalin and WS Atkins plc have reached agreement on the terms and conditions of a recommended all cash acquisition of the entire issued and to be issued share capital of Atkins by SNC-Lavalin
  • Under the terms of the Acquisition, each Atkins Shareholder will be entitled to receive for each Atkins Share 2,080 pence in cash
  • The Acquisition will create a C$12.1 billion global fully integrated professional services and project management company with 53,000 employees and significantly improve SNC-Lavalin’s overall margins, and further balance its business portfolio.
  • Neil Bruce, President & CEO of SNC-Lavalin, said: “This proposed acquisition is fully aligned with our growth strategy, creating a global fully integrated professional services and project management company. By combining two highly complementary businesses, we will increase our depth and breadth of services to position us as a premier partner to public and private sector clients. Together, we will become part of a larger global organization that will open the door to new opportunities for further growth and development.”
Woodford Patient Capital Trust PLC Annual Financial Report
  • Total assets decreased to £771.1m (2015: £805.3m).
  • Net asset value per share decreased to 93.24p (2015: 97.37p).
  • Susan Searle, Chairman, said: With the capital raised at launch fully invested, the Company is now in a position to nurture its portfolio of innovative businesses on the road to commercial success. The Board shares Neil’s confidence that the solid operational progress seen across much of the portfolio will ultimately be reflected in the Company’s valuation.”
Sports Direct International PLC Acquisition
  • Sports Direct announces that it has received the approval of the Delaware Bankruptcy Court to acquire certain assets of Eastern Outfitters LLC.
  • The aggregate cost of the acquisition amounts to $101m in cash.
  • In the financial period to 28 January 2017, the businesses being acquired incurred a pre-tax net operating loss of $26m. As at 28 January 2017, the gross assets of the businesses being acquired was $126m.
Restaurant Group PLC Board Change
  • The Restaurant Group announces that Barry Nightingale, Chief Financial Officer, will step down from the Board and leave the Company with immediate effect.
  • The Board has commenced a search for a new Chief Financial Officer and will update the market in due course.
  • Debbie Hewitt, Chairman, said: “On behalf of the Board, I would like to thank Barry for the valuable contribution that he has made over the past year, as we began the Company’s turnaround process, which continues to progress well.  We wish him all the best for the future.”