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Weekly Round Up, October 29, 2014

Published on Oct 28 2014 12:51 PM

Weekly Round Up, October 29, 2014

Aldi has been announced as the new sponsor of popular TV show The Restaurant. The tenth series is set to broadcast in early 2015, this time on TV3 and with an extended, one-hour slot. It will be voiced by presenter Sean Moncrieff, and is produced by Vision Independent Productions. The series will see six celebrities become head chefs over six weeks, during which time they will have their cooking judged by resident critics, Tom Doorley and Paolo Tulio, as well as a guest critic each week. Jeff Ford, TV3 group director of content commented, “It’s wonderful to see a programme like The Restaurant, one of TV’s most popular cookery programmes, on TV3, and even more fantastic to have a brand like Aldi supporting the show.” Diners can apply now to be part of The Restaurant on TV3 and receive a complimentary meal courtesy of Aldi by logging onto www.tv3.ie/takepart.

British American Tobacco (BAT) has reported a fall in the number of cigarettes sold in the nine months to 30 September, citing economic pressures. The maker of Pall Mall and Dunhill noted a 1% drop in sales for the period versus the year before. “The trading environment remains challenging due to continuing pressure on consumer disposable income worldwide and the slow economic recovery in western Europe,” BAT said in a statement. However, BAT added that it was “on track to deliver another year of good earnings growth at constant rates of exchange.”

Heineken has reported lower than expected beer sales in Q3, following a wet summer across Europe, but has retained its full year outlook. The Dutch brewer, which makes Sol, Tiger and Strongbow cider, as well as Heineken, said beer sales were hardly changed in the July to September period in eastern and western Europe and had increased elsewhere. The firm’s consolidated revenue for Q3 rose 0.2% on a like-for-like basis of €5.10 billion, although it said its net profit was lower than in Q3 of 2013. Despite this, Heineken added it expects full-year margin expansion by more than its annual target of 40 basis points.

The Consumers Association of Ireland (CAI) has called on supermarkets to implement sharp reductions in the cost price of milk, beef, and other staples over the coming months. Dermot Jewell, spokesperson for CAI, said shoppers struggling to pay bills this year must get the full benefit of reductions in the cost price of milk, beef, eggs, lamb, poultry and potatoes. Jewell added, “Supermarkets should either pass these on in full or explain why they're not, because if the cost price of something comes down, an unchanged retail price is effectively an increase”. Recent figures from the Central Statistics Office show Irish farmgate milk prices fell by almost 10% in the year to August. Meanwhile, potato prices paid to farmers dropped 43%, beef prices were down 10%, lamb decreased by 5%, poultry by 3% and eggs 4%.

Pernod Ricard, owner of Irish Distillers, has forecast a modest profit growth in its current financial year, following improving demand in Asia, which boosted sales to beat forecasts in Q1. The French drinks giant anticipates growth of between 1% and 2% in underlying profit from recurring operations, for the year ending June 30, 2015, while the fiscal year 2013/14 saw a profit growth of 2%. Pernod said that net sales of Jameson rose by 9% in Q4 of 2013/2014, while in Asia, where Pernod makes 43% of its operating profit, like-for-like sales rose 4% for the quarter. Sales remain down by 1% in Europe, where Pernod makes 35% of its revenue, but increased by 3% in America where it makes 27% of its sales.

Chiquita Brands International’s board has accepted Brazilian juice maker Cutrale Group’s raised takeover offer of $14.50 a share. The agreement comes three days after Chiquita shareholders rejected a proposed merger with Ireland-based banana supplier Fyffes. Chiquita CEO Ed Lonergan commented, “This transaction demonstrates our board's commitment to maximising shareholder value and underscores the significant progress Chiquita has achieved over the past couple of years in our financial and operational performance.” The deal is worth $1.3 billion, including Chiquita’s debt, and the offer is a 33.8% premium to Chiquita’s share price on March 7. In a joint statement, Cutrale and Safra said: "Chiquita will be able to take advantage of the vast knowledge of the Cutrale Group in farming, processing, technology, sourcing, distribution, logistics and marketing."

Irish Small and Medium Enterprises Association (ISME) chairman Eamonn Kielty has said that Ireland often fails to recognise and reward entrepreneurial endeavours, highlighting a need for “cultural change”. Kielty was speaking at ISME's Annual Conference, which focused on three themes: Entrepreneurship, Banking Alternatives and Family Business. Kielty said: “The efforts of entrepreneurs must be recognised and rewarded, and this is true both for policymakers at all levels and for society at large. Too often entrepreneurs are perceived as greedy free riders who are responsible for all the world's problems. This must change.” He added, should an entrepreneur’s business not succeed, “they are unlikely to get any help from the State unless they are completely 'bust', no income, no assets and no job.” Kielty highlighted the launch of the National Policy Statement on Entrepreneurship as a chance to put entrepreneurship “back at the top of the agenda”, calling on the government to put an end to “the discriminatory tax system in relation to the self-employed”. He said that the recommendations of the Entrepreneurship Policy must be implemented as soon as possible.

Glendalough Irish Whiskey has announced the launch of a new thirteen-year old single malt whiskey at the Mansion House in Dublin. The whiskey is Glendalough’s second offering from its range of aged, single-malt Irish whiskeys, and is due to launch at the Whiskey Live event. The company released its first Irish Whiskey in August of this year, a seven-year old single malt. Commenting on the launch, Barry Gallagher, MD of Glendalough Irish Whiskey said: “Irish single malt is often called the champagne of whiskeys. This is something special, it heralds the second coming of single malt in Ireland. It is a style of whiskey that gave Irish whiskey its name in the first place.” He added, “Our great grandfathers drank this great drink and we believe its time has come again. We are delighted to be able to launch our 13-year-old single malt here at Whiskey Live, among those who appreciate this great spirit for the craft that it is.”

© 2014 - Checkout Magazine by Emily Horne.

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