Newspaper retail round up

A roundup of this week’s retail stories… M&S, Somerfield, Tesco, Threshers, Black’s Leisure, Albemarle & Bond

M&S staff face £60m bonus

Marks & Spencer is expected to announce its 70,000 permanent staff will share a £60m bonus after the retailer saw better-than-expected performance.
From The Sunday Telegraph

Somerfield sale leads to legal dispute

The £1.6bn sale of the Somerfield convenience store chain has attracted a legal dispute from a company controlled by Vivian Imerman claiming it is owed millions from the sale. Imerman is the former brother-in-law of Robert Tchenguiz, who controlled part of the Somerfield business.
From The Observer

Takes rules out Northern Rock

Tesco has ruled itself out of the Nothern Rock takeover and outlines plans for its own branded bank offering current accounts and mortgages in UK and abroad.
From The Guardian

Morrisons negotiates with suppliers over promotions

Morrison’s is starting negotiations with suppliers to fund in store promotions in a bid to keep up with rivals now food prices have stopped rising.

Warm weather could make retailers discount

Unusually mild winter weather has left retailers trying to sell heavy winter knits while the sun shines. It could mean higher levels of discounting.

M&S shareholders raise concerns over CEO hunt

Some of Marks & Spencer’s biggest shareholders have raised concerns that the retail chain would be better placed to find a new chairman to replace Sir Stuart Rose, before finding a new chief executive.

Blair in talks with Tesco over Middle East

Former Prime Minister Tony Blair is said to be in talks with Tesco to help the chain open stores in the Middle East, for a £1m payout. Blair is a peace envoy in the region. Blair’s proposed role was thought to involve acting as a figurehead for Tesco to break into the Middle East market.
From The Financial Times

KPMG appointed as Threshers administrator

First Quench, which owns the Threshers off-license chain, appointed administers KPMG to find potential buyers on Friday. US-based restructuring specialist Gordon Brothers is thought to be interested.

Black’s Leisure faces pressure from creditors

Outdoor clothing retailer, Black’s Leisure, is facing pressure from creditors said to be unhappy with restructuring proposals and the prospect of a coup by a former chairman.

Pawnbrokers in merger talks

Pawnbrokers Albemarle & Bond and H&T, have held initial merger talks that could mean the formation of the UK’s largest pawnbroking business, with 252 outlets, valued at more than £230m.
From The Mail on Sunday

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