Thursday newspaper round-up: Glaxo, London listings, energy suppliers, British Steel

A green sustainable earth

A £350 million private equity-backed project to prevent the closure of GlaxoSmithKline’s manufacturing plant in Ulverston has “fallen over”. Tony Mallin, executive chairman of Star Capital, the London-based private equity firm, said the venture had been thwarted by the “lack of a long-term contract commitment” from the government. “This was not high up on their priority list at the moment and all the focus is on vaccines,” he said. – The Times
London has raised more equity capital for newly listing businesses this year than at any time since 2007, new figures show, boosting the City’s status as a global financial centre. As many as 122 companies listed on the main market in 2021, raising £16.8 billion, up from £9.4 billion in 43 floats in 2020, the London Stock Exchange Group said. That made London the biggest single source of capital outside the US and China, it added. – The Times

Energy suppliers are seeking to tie customers to fixed deals costing as much as £4,000 a year, as ministers face growing warnings over “untenable” proposed rises to the price cap this spring. A 12-month fixed deal for a typical household now costs an average of almost £2,500, according to data from comparison website uSwitch. – Telegraph

Lower life expectancy triggered by Covid and its knock-on effects, including reduced cancer diagnosis and erosion of mental health, are expected to boost the profits of pension providers by £7.4bn over the next five years. The average Briton is expected to live nine months less as a result of the pandemic, according to analysis by Royal Bank of Canada. The impact will boost profits for major pension managers, including Aviva, Just Group and Legal & General, on smaller payouts to retirees. – Telegraph

British workers facing soaring costs of living in 2022 need a bigger pay rise after a “lost decade” of wage growth under Conservative-led governments, the head of the Trades Union Congress has said. In her new year’s message, Frances O’Grady urged ministers to take immediate steps to encourage faster pay growth across the British economy amid soaring energy bills and other costs.- Guardian

British Steel sank to a loss of £140m last year, according to accounts that showed financial difficulties even after it was taken over by a new Chinese owner. The UK company was saved from liquidation in 2019 when Jingye stepped in to buy it – for only £24m – after months of subsidised operations as the government pushed to find a buyer for an important industrial employer. Its previous owner, the private equity firm Greybull Capital, exited after only three years in charge. – Guardian

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