An Post seeks rise in price of stamp as mail volume falls; Lottery sales hit by retail downturn; Pasty tax petition delivered to Downing Street
Apr 30 2012
1. An Post seeks rise in price of stamp as mail volume falls
An Post will seek a rise in the price of a 55 cents stamp after operating profit more than halved last year to €2.2 million from €5.7 million in 2010. The Irish Times reports the volume of mail handled by the State-owned body fell by 7%. However group turnover still increased slightly, from €805 million to €807 million, due to the group diversifying its revenue streams. Regulator ComReg will make its decision on the price later this year.
2. Lottery sales hit by retail downturn
The National Lottery raised €232 million for good causes last year, the lowest amount in five years, due to falling ticket sales and a reduction in the overall allocation to lottery-funded projects. The Irish Times reports the company generated sales of €761 million from lottery tickets and scratch cards in 2011, a decline of 1.4% on the previous year. However it said this was achieved at a time when the average retail spend fell by 5%.??
3. Pasty tax petition delivered to Downing Street
Hundreds of UK bakers have delivered a petition of half a million signatures against the pasty tax to Downing Street. The Guardian reports that supported by a brass band, bakers protested against a recent 20% VAT budget charge to fresh baked goods such as sausage rolls, pies and Cornish pasties. Speaking over a megaphone, Greggs CEO, Ken McMeikan, said he had a “resolute determination” to fight the new tax to the “bitter end”.
4. Askeaton plant sold in €9bn Nestle deal
Nestle has bought Pfizer's nutrition business in a deal worth more than €9bn; subject to regulatory approval. The Irish Independent reports that the sale includes five manufacturing plants, such as an infant formula facility at Askeaton, Co Limerick. The price was 20% higher than what analysts first predicted last year, suggesting that the company sees substantial growth opportunities in the infant formula and sports nutrition sectors.
5. Connacht Gold turnover up 16%
Turnover at co-operative Connacht Gold rose 16% last year to €345 million, driven by a strong performance from its dairy ingredients business. The Irish Times reports it achieved a slight increase in operating profits (excluding Donegal Creameries’ results), from €3.24m in 2010 to €3.29m. Chief executive Aaron Forde said that while this increase was “modest”, it reflected the fact that the co-op pays a strong price to its suppliers.
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Limerick shoplifters using magnetic devices to steal goods (Live 95 FM)
Booze bid by Lidl follows Poots attack (Londonderry Sentinel)
Consumer spending to drop again (Irish Examiner)
Small rise in monthly retail sales but annual sales sliding (Irish Times)
Call for independent retailers’ week (Derry Journal)
ISME warn Government over retail sector (Inside Ireland)
Do your research to negotiate a better deal on your retail rental (Irish Independent)
All eyes on future of CAP (Irish Examiner)
Cork retail property 68% off peak (Irish Examiner)
Tesco's decline continuing (Belfast Telegraph)
Vat hike and poor sentiment blamed as sales fall for 12th consecutive quarter (Irish Examiner)
Drinks industry indicates sales flat as consumption declines (Irish Times)
Export markets offering best chance for Irish food and drink companies (Irish Times)
Town centre retail unit for rent (Irish Times)
Insomnia Coffee to open franchise outlets (Breaking News.ie)
Discount fashion lifts AB Foods (Irish Times)
Retailers pin hope for sales boost on weather (Irish Independent)
Shell earnings soar on high oil prices (Irish Times)
M&S launches localised Irish website (Breaking News.ie)
Markets unmoved by corporate data (Irish Times)
Ben Dunne talks of the road to recovery and how corruption is alive in politics (Irish Independent)
An Post customers face higher charges in 'pricing adjustment' (Irish Independent)
Dealz to replace World of Wonder in Gorey (Irish Independent)