Business Extra

Booted out BOOTS could be sold or floated by late 2023 as its US parent company is pressured into breaking up the global pharmacy giant. Owned by the Retail Pharmacy International Division of Walgreens Boots Alliance, its investors and board members want to speed up plans to refocus the business on the US.  

Bank ranks IBERCAJA and Caixabank have higher liquidity ratios (LCRs) than other Spanish banks, management consultants Alvarez & Marsal found.  Spain’s banks all exceed EU requirements but Ibercaja’s 306 per cent ratio and Caixabank’s 284.2 per cent mean they have reserves for three months and 2.8 months respectively.  

Meters matter ENERGY companies in the UK used warrants to install 94,000 prepayment meters in 2022, with Scottish Power and British Gas ordering most.  The government has now agreed with suppliers to halt forced installations amid concerns that rules to protect vulnerable households were not complied with.

Lucky middle SPANISH salaries grew in 2022 in all categories, although rises were below the inflation rate of more than 8 per cent.  Middle management posts benefited most with an average increase of 6 per cent, compared with 3.4 per cent for executives and 3.71 per cent for employees.  

Factory closes More than 100 workers lost their jobs after Kettle Interiors, a Corby (Northamptonshire) furniture business went into administration.  The administrator cited “economic challenges” including increasing freight costs for the family-run firm which sold furniture under different brand names to UK and European retailers.

English fizz TENTERDEN (Kent) wine-maker Chapel Down had record sales of “traditional method” sparkling wine last year, selling 790,000 bottles, up from 522,000 in 2021. Revenue rose 53 per cent to £9.6 million (€10.9 million),  offsetting a 45 per cent drop in still wine sales owing to a poor harvest. 

Share shareout FOLLOWING its 2022 results, Naturgy, formerly Gas Natural Fenos, is paying a dividend of €1.2 euros per share, of which 70 cents was paid out in August and November with the rest due this April. Naturgy will maintain the same dividend level next year, company president Francisco Reynes announced.

Asda compromise ASDA is prepared to sell 13 petrol stations with adjoining grocery stores to allay competition concerns over its £600 million (€680.5 million) acquisition of the Co-op petrol forecourts. The response came in the wake of a Competitions and Market Authority’s warning made two weeks ago.

Pricey billets A NEW luxury hotel, JW Marriott, has opened on Madrid’s Golden Mile in front of Four Seasons and the Canalejas Shopping Centre.   “Expensive hotels are here to stay,” said AC Hotels president Antonio Catalan during the inauguration. “Tourism has more than enough clients but insufficient prices.”

War chest CHARLES WOODBURN, chief executive of defence company BAE Systems since 2017, received more than £9 million (€10.2) in bonuses on top of his £1.1 million (€1.25 million) 2022 salary. BAE shares have soared by 80 per cent since Russia invaded Ukraine and analysts said the company is “doing very nicely.”

Written by

Linda Hall

Originally from the UK, Linda is based in Valenca and is a reporter for The Euro Weekly News covering local news. Got a news story you want to share? Then get in touch at