News roundup—15th May 2008

News roundup—15th May 2008

Findel reported a 16 per cent rise on annual sales
from continuing operations to £634.0 million, and an
increase of more than 100 per cent in profit before tax, to
£34.0 million for the year ended 31st March. Nonetheless
the home shopping and educational supplies company, whose
brands include The Cotswold Company, and
Letterbox said that “the final result was
disappointing in light of our previous expectations”.
Sales for the first six weeks of fiscal 2008 were up 5 per cent
from the comparable period of the previous year.

Corporate Express refused the latest takeover bid by
rival office supplies giant Staples. Although Staples
increased its bid this week by 10 per cent, to approximately
€1.5 billion, Associated Press quotes a Corporate Express
statement as saying that the bid “still significantly
undervalues” the company.

John Browett, the chief executive of troubled electricals
retailer DSG, has announced his turnaround plan for the
parent company of Dixons, PC World and Currys.
Among the changes, according to the Telegraph: “expansion of the
internet business” and £50 million of cost cuts,
including the closure of 77 stores over the next
few years.

During the second fiscal quarter ended in March, the
Primondo mail order division of Arcandor
“posted an adjusted operating profit for the first time in
years, swinging to EBITDA of €1.7 million on restructuring
and a further expansion of speciality mail-order operations in
eastern Europe and Russia,” reports Thomson Financial. Primondo’s catalogues
include Quelle, Afibel and Peter Hahn.


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