Business Roundup for Spain and the UK

Business Roundup for Spain and the UK

ROCA: The Spanish sanitaryware company incurred losses with Russia exit Photo credit: roca.com

Down the drain  ROCA lost almost €120 million following the February 2022 Ukraine invasion.

Although Russia accounted for 7 per cent of Roca’s total revenues, with a 2021 turnover of €141 million and profits of €19.5 million, it was one of the first companies to leave, selling up to its four Russian subsidiaries in June 2022 for €169.3 million.

In late 2022 these were valued at €154.1 million, bringing €12.5 million in capital gains although this was swallowed up by the depreciation of the rouble against the euro, resulting in  losses of €84.3 million which,  added to a further €35.5 million in impairments, finally cost Roca €119.9 million.

Pfizer loses its fizz PFIZER intends to cut 500 jobs at its Sandwich (Kent) laboratories to reduce costs by £2.8 billion (€3.2 billion).

As demand falls for its Covid drugs, the US pharmaceutical giant plans to cease its Pharmaceutical Sciences Small Molecule (PSSM) operation where researchers turn experimental molecules into medicines for clinical trials.

Pfizer said the decision to halt PSSM work at Sandwich followed discouraging sales of Covid treatments, with the company now expecting full-year revenues of between $58 billion (€53.47 billion) and $61 billion (€57.7 billion). It previously predicted of revenues of between $67 billion (€63.26 billion) and $70 billion (€65.5 billion).

Making headway LOW-COST telecoms firm Digi outstripped its rivals during the first nine months of 2023.

Turnover for Telefonica, Orange,Vodafone and MasMovil grew slowly or languished, while the Romania-headquartered company reported a record  €466 million.

This was 30.5 per cent more than during the same period last year and in line with the €166 million recorded in this year’s third quarter, 29.9 per cent up on 2022.

Uncomplicated cheap offers, no “small print” and personalised attention for clients, a service that other operators generally outsource, are key to Digi’s success, analysts said.

Meanwhile, the company is waiting to learn if it will be chosen to acquire assets sold off within the framework of the Orange-Masmovil merger.

Of great interest WITH interest rates in the UK at their highest in 15 years, people are increasingly anxious to learn about potential changes.

Figures released by analysts at L&C Mortgages revealed that Google searches asking, “When will interest rates change?” have now reached a 58,000 monthly average.

“Ultimately, there is no way of knowing when interest rates will fall or change,” L&C Mortgages said.

“Usually, rates change every six weeks. However, the Bank of England has kept the rate at 5.25 per cent for a second month. This is done to tackle recent high inflation figures, a significant problem in the UK.

“Rates could increase by a further 0.25 per cent or 0.50 per cent, potentially peaking at 5.75 per cent and then falling over the next five years as inflation eases.”

Parents help out HELPFUL over-50s in the UK have handed £98 billion (€112.4 billion) to their children over the last five years.

A study carried out for the SunLife financial services company found that parents had spent £36.5 billion (€41.8 billion) on helping offspring to buy a property, while giving £2 billion (€2.3 billion towards paying basic household bills.

Other contributions were for school fees or to buy a car, although in some cases parents said that they gave money to their children “because they could afford to.”

Subsidiary role TELEFONICA BRASIL accounts for 56 per cent of parent company Telefonica’s capitalisation.

Shares are now worth 50.6 reales (€9.45) each, up 32 per cent since the beginning of the year, compared with Telefonica’s 10 per cent.  That gives the subsidiary a total worth of 84 billion reales (approximately €16 billion).

When added to Telefonica Deutschland’s €5 billion, this means that between them the two subsidiaries account for practically 80 per cent of Telefonica’s capital.  In contrast, Spain, the UK (Virgin Media 02) and Latin America’s Hispam contribute just 20 per cent.

Royal Mail fail COMMUNICATIONS watchdog Ofcom has fined Royal Mail for not achieving first and second-class delivery targets over the last financial year.

The UK’s postal service, now owned by International Distribution Services, must pay £5.6 million (€6.4 million) for failing to meet goals.

Royal Mail should complete 99.9 per cent of daily delivery routes on the required day but last year delivered only 73.7 per cent of first-class mail and 90.7 per cent of second-class mail on time.

Complaints of late and irregular deliveries continued to grow and Ofcom suggested that the service had not yet recovered from interruptions during the pandemic.

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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 editorial@euroweeklynews.com.

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