Sunday newspaper round-up: Tesco, Vodafone, Bank of England

by | Feb 6, 2022

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The head of Tesco, John Allan, thinks the worst of food price inflation “is yet to come”, predicting that it will soon rise to 5%. In remarks to the BBC, the chairman of the grocer said: “”In some ways the worst is still to come – because although food price inflation in Tesco last quarter was only 1%, we are impacted by rising energy prices. Our suppliers are impacted by rising energy prices. We’re doing all we can to offset it … but that’s the sort of number we’re talking about. Of course, 5%.” – Guardian

Vodafone has begun a secret overhaul of the group codenamed Project Galaxy as it comes under increasing pressure from an activist investor. Its entire global enterprise division was being reorganised. Separately, the company has found an accounting glitch which meant that it had overestimated the money coming from some multinational clients of that division. – Financial Mail on Sunday

Gerard Lyons, an economist close to Boris Johnson, has taken aim at Bank of England Governor, Andrew Bailey, accusing him of not acting fast enough to avoid the cost of living crisis that was threatening the country. Lyons accused Bailey of being “complacent” about inflation and said that he had “misread” the economy and failed to communicate with markets and to “nip inflation in the bud”. – The Financial Mail on Sunday


BP has come under fire from those who accuse it of cashing in on Russian politics via its stake in Kremlin-controlled Rosneft. The oil major is expected to soon report a $3bn profit from that stake over the course of 2021, even as fears mount of an invasion of Ukraine. Sam Armstrong, at the Henry Jackson Society, said: “For a British firm to profit off Russia’s exploitative gas-price raising at the same time as British consumers are facing record breaking price rises would be plainly immoral.” – Sunday Times

Household goods giant Unilever is facing make-or-break week, according to some of its top shareholders, who are irked about the company’s failed bid for GlaxoSmithKline. Unilever chairman, Nils Andersen, and management have already embarked on charm offensive with shareholders. One of those shareholders, Flossback von Storch, recently told the Financial Times that Unilever should “seriously think about splitting the company.” – The Sunday Times

Trainline’s bosses have warned the government of the damage that a planned ticketing app funded by taxpayers could wreak on their business. In particular, they have sought guarantees from Whitehall that an app being developed by the new state-body tasked with overseeing railways does not undercut the commissions that they charge passengers and business clients. Short interest in Trainline’s stock has dropped over the last few months, but roughly 5.7% of its shares remain on loan to would be short-sellers. – The Sunday Times


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