The executive changes at Kellogg and Premier Foods plc attracted scrutiny from analysts on Wall Street and in the City this week, France’s competition watchdog threatened the country’s food retailers with legislation to free up the sector – and X5 Retail Group, Russia’s largest retailer, was pleased with its acquisition of discount chain Kopeyka. Here is the best of who said what this week.
“Under Bryant, we anticipate that Kellogg will place an increased emphasis on product innovation to drive revenue growth but we don’t expect these investments to yield measurable improvements overnight” – Morningstar analyst Erin Swanson believes new Kellogg CEO John Bryant is unlikely to make an immediate impact.
“If the industry fails to implement these recommendations, legislative intervention may be necessary” – France’s competition watchdog calls on the country’s largest food retailers to abolish contracts that make it difficult for franchisees to switch chains.
“It feels like there is a constant tinkering at Premier” – one unnamed City analyst wonders whether the executive changes at Premier Foods plc will really pay off.
“The quality of Kopeyka’s assets was underlined by serious interest from international players” – Andrei Gusev, M&A and business development director at X5 Retail Group, says the Russian retailer’s new acquisition had been coveted by overseas players.
“While overall retail sales in the US are beginning to see a rebound, the grocery retail remains challenging. Most of the majors are still running negative like-for-like sales” – Neil Stern, a US retail consultant at McMillan Doolittle, says the US grocery landscape remains tough as the industry head into 2011.
“Going forward Morrisons will have to focus on building basket size to sustain its performance” – Kantar Worldpanel communications director Ed Garner points the way forward for Morrisons after the UK retailer sees its market share fall for the first time in three years.
“Nestle …. is performing well in a very tough market but we have to continue to operate as efficiently as possible to remain competitive” – David Rennie, MD for Nestle’s confectionery business in the UK, explains why the company plans to close a production plant in the country.
“They have provided poor service to their customers, they have failed to allow for foreign exchange fluctuations and commissioning of new machinery has been so flawed that they are losing thousands every week” – Jennie Formby, national officer at UK union Unite, says jobs are being lost at Bakkavor due to “management incompetence” at the own-label supplier.
“The deficiencies of Maple Leaf in critical areas such as board independence and corporate governance are well known to its shareholders and the investment community at large” – Thomas Dea, partner at West Face Capital explains why the hedge fund is putting pressure on Maple Leaf Foods to improve the way the Canadian food group is run.
“The industrial action planned will leave many totally perplexed” – Heinz’s UK business questions why staff at its flagship production site in the country have voted for strike action.