Updates from Rentokil Initial, Virgin Money and Bwin

Battle for online gamer Bwin gets tighter meanwhile Far East shares are hit by weaker factory numbers

Updated: 
savings, tax, stockmarket, pensions, cash, investment FTSE 100, Bwin, Virgin Money RentokilThe FTSE 100 managed a 55-point lift on Friday, taking it to 6,247.9 before the bank holiday. Inmarsat and BGGroup saw the biggest hikes, up 4.8% and 3.4% respectively (to 981p and 994.60p). Shell and BP shares were also on the rise, up 2.8% and 2.6% (to 1706p and 360.50p). Overall the FTSE 100 suffered its worst monthly loss since 2012 following the Chinese confidence rout.

The Dow Jones slipped 114 points by the end of Friday, down 0.69%, to 16,528 with Merck and Boeing taking 2.7% and 1.9% falls. Chinese shares this morning have continued to wobble, down 5% at one point.

We start with a new acquisition for rat catcher Rentokil. The pest player says it is buying The Steritech Group, a North American pest operator for $425m cash, subject to US regulatory approval. It's Rentokil's second US acquisition within a week after picking up Anderson Pest Solutions.

Rentokil says the acquisition strengthens its position as the number three pest control business in the US, a $7.5bn market which accounts for around 50% of global pest control services.

"This is a rare opportunity to acquire a high-quality business with national scale in this key target growth market," says Rentokil boss Andy Ransom. "The deal is in line with our growth strategy and will be transformational for Rentokil in North America."

Next, a revised offer from 888 Holdings for Bwin. The Board of Bwin says it's evaluating the proposal though there's tight competition from AIM-listed GVC, the owner of Sportingbet.

"The Board's unanimous recommendation of 888's offer, which was announced on 17 July 2015, remains unchanged by this announcement," says Bwin.

Talks with GVC have been ongoing with a recent offer but previously Bwin said a GVC Holdings offer was less compelling and potentially more complex.

Lastly Virgin Money says Lee Rochford is to stand down as Chief Financial Officer (CFO) and as an exec director of the company.

Rochford joined Virgin Money to lead its IPO which completed in November 2014; the business has performed strongly since then claims Virgin.

Dave Dyer, currently strategy director, previously CFO of Virgin Money, takes on the role of CFO for an interim period says Virgin.

Breaking news: Netflix fails to renew a deal with distributor Epix meaning many movies may be cut

How to Time Chinese Markets Slowing Decline

Read more

Top Ten Isa Tips 2015

Beware 21st Century Bubbles

What next for Greece?