Updates from Pennon Group and Vodafone


A 0.23% slip for the FTSE 100 yesterday to 6,659.4. Sugar maker Tate & Lyle saw its shares stirred and shaken, down 16% to 660p as gloom shrouded its full year outlook. Shares in Rolls-Royce Holdings also fell hard, down -13.6% as defence cuts hit profits.

The Dow Jones climbed 0.40% to 16,027.5.

First off, full year numbers for FTSE 100 player Coca-Cola HBC AG. Net sales fall 2% to €6,874m for the full year while a 2% fall is also recorded in the last quarter to €1,575m. Comparable net profit for the full year climbs 3% to €293m.

Operating expenses as a percentage of net sales revenue declined by 130bps, more than offsetting unfavourable foreign currency movements.

"Once again we have delivered solid free cash flow growth," says chief exec Dimitris Lois. "Based on these results and against the backdrop of continuing economic difficulties and volatility in our territories, we are cautiously optimistic about the year ahead."

Next, Vodafone India says it has acquired spectrum licences for £1.9bn in a new Indian government auction. Vodafone India has 160 million customers with the number of mobile internet users increasing 38% to 45.7 million in its most recent quarter, it claims.

Vodafone's investment totals £1.9bn of which £540 million is payable in financial year 2013/2014. Data usage continues to grow with 3G usage averaging in excess of 700MB per month, claims the company.

"This spectrum," says Vodafone, "and the continued investment in networks will enable Vodafone India to build on its success in delivering superior mobile services to its customers throughout India."

Finally, utility infrastructure player Pennon Group. Overall financial performance since 30 September 2013 remains on track to meet management expectations the company claims. Despite the flooding in the South West, Pennon claims effective performance and customer service.

Since 30 September Pennon has drawn down £60m from the EIB and a further £130m facility is in process; they've also increased a £60m term loan to £100m and drawn down a £30m Revolving Credit Facility (RCF).

Pennon recently saw its interim dividend rise more than 7%. For the half-year up to 30 September there was a 3.5% climb in pre-tax profits to £110.9m.