Robert is Assistant Editor of Reuters Breakingviews, based in London. He has a special focus on investment, writing about it on a global basis. Robert worked for The Times, in London, in a variety of writing and editing capacities from 1998 to 2010. For nearly 10 years he edited the newspaper’s daily Tempus investment column. He was also deputy business editor, acting business editor, a leader writer, the chief obituaries writer and a news editor in the home affairs department. Prior to joining The Times, Robert worked on The Independent and the London Evening Standard. His most recent book is called The Unwritten Laws of Finance and Investment (Profile, 2010). As a part-time lecturer, Robert led the financial journalism specialism at The City University in London in 10 academic years between 1995 and 2007. Follow Robert on Twitter @RobertCole7
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The UK group is kicking its Suboxone habit. It plans to demerge its prescription drugs unit whose lead product is a heroin substitute. Reckitt is open to a trade sale and that might be more remunerative, but revenue and profit declines mean valuations could be thin either way.
The mooted amalgamation of Britain’s Carillion and Balfour Beatty might qualify as a merger of equals, but only because Balfour has fallen on hard times. Synergy promises will make the numbers work. The danger is that operational misfortunes will drag down the larger group.
Hiring Unilever exec Dave Lewis to replace Phil Clarke as CEO shows necessary decisiveness. A profit alert highlights the urgency of the situation. The UK grocer needs radical reinvention. The structure could be simplified, and braver tactics in the UK price war may be required.
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- German soccer glory was predictable - with luck
- Burberry could have avoided pay revolt
- Tesco finance hire is big win for embattled grocer
- UK takeover rules are fiddly but fit for purpose
- Ashley bonus badly conflates owner and exec roles
- Numbers show Germany will beat Brazil to World Cup