MARKET REPORT: Capital desperate to cut costs as losses mount

Shares in the BBC’s license fee collector fell by more than a fifth after it made a loss and outlined plans to cut more jobs.

Government contractor Capita began streamlining itself in November to save £60m, and aims to save a further £100m by mid-2025.

It cut about 800 jobs but declined to say how many would be lost under the latest plan.

Capita will have to use “every lever we need to achieve that level of cost efficiency”, finance boss Tim Weller said, as the company reported a loss of £106m in 2023, after posting a profit of £61m the year before. had made 4 million.

This included a £25 million hit linked to last year’s cyber attack.

Job cuts: Government contractor Capita began streamlining its operations in November in a bid to save £60 million. It now wants to save a further £100m by mid-2025

CEO Adolfo Hernandez said: ‘We still need to deliver the operational excellence that will allow us to create the right platform for future growth or realize our full potential for the benefit of shareholders.’

Shares fell 22.5 per cent, or 4.53p, to 15.65p.

Kipling Cakes owner Premier Foods went the other way – up 11.5 percent, or 16 cents, to 154.8 cents – as it prepares to suspend pension shortfall payments from April .

This leaves an additional £33 million to spend in the 12 months ending March 2025.

In the broader market, the FTSE 100 rose 0.4 percent, or 33.15 points, to 7,679.31 and the FTSE 250 rose 1.1 percent, or 202.19 points, to 19,473.22, as investors took Jeremy Hunt’s Budget welcomed, which also included a British Isa.

The London Stock Exchange Group rose 2.3 percent, or 210p, to 9252p after investors including private equity firm Blackstone, Thomson Reuters and others sold around £1.9 billion worth of shares in the operator.

Stock watch – Esken

1709784287 972 MARKET REPORT Capital desperate to cut costs as losses mount

Private equity giant Carlyle is set to take control of Southend Airport after striking a deal to settle a debt with its owner.

The investor will take an 82.5 percent stake in London airport, while current owner Esken will retain 17.5 percent.

Esken, formerly Stobart Group, said it agreed to the proposal to settle the airport’s £193.75 million debt to Carlyle.

Esken will also delist its shares in London. The share price fell 53.3 percent, or 0.08p, to 0.07p.

British Airways owner IAG flew even higher – 4.8 percent, or 6.8p, to 148.65p – after JP Morgan said the company could outperform market expectations as it moves from cutting costs to boosting profits.

Travel agency Tui rose 9 per cent, or 47p, to 569p, while Greggs rose 2.7 per cent, or 76p, to 2850p after agent upgrades.

Box sales at acquisition target DS Smith improved in the third quarter to the end of January.

The paper and packaging company has been approached by competitor Mondi, who has until today to make a strong offer or walk away. It fell 1.4 percent, or 4.5 cents, to 315.8 cents.

Data center and wireless network investor Digital 9 Infrastructure expects the sale of its crown jewel to close this month.

The deal passed the final regulatory hurdle and cleared the way for the sale of the Verne Global business to Ardian France SA for around £465m, increasing it by 25.7 per cent, or 4.86p, to 23.8p .

Convatec, manufacturer of ostomy bags, raised expectations after a strong pipeline of products, such as the new urinary catheter for women.

Revenues are now expected to rise between 5 and 7 percent each year. It rose 6.1 percent, or 15.4p, to 267.8p.

Construction company Breedon will start operating in the US after buying Missouri-based concrete supplier BME for almost £240m. Shares rose 4 percent, or 15p, to 395p.