The Week Ahead: Dairy Crest's cheesy ads win City friends


What do cheese and pop stars have in common? Dairy Crest has had a habit of using singers to promote its brands. First there was Johnny Rotten's Country Life ads, now there is "up and coming" singer Ed Prosek singing Paul Simon's "Homeward Bound" in its Cathedral City telly ads.

The commercials are going down well, we are told. And so is the company's strategy. Now the group has flogged its French spreads brand St Hubert, analysts think it is in good shape. Its food business is doing rather well, in contrast to milk, which has been at the centre of the milk pricing scandal.

The Jefferies scribe Alex Howson rates the cheese to butter business a buy, ahead of its trading update today, and gives its shares a price target of 400p, up from 370p. He thinks its key food brands have maintained encouraging growth, but the milk business remains challenged. But he argues that there is "scope for management to restore Dairies profitability mid-term" and Mr Howson remains "positive" on the company. He expects profit before tax for the full year to come in at £49.1m.

Results/Updates: AG Barr, China Food Company, DDD Group, EKF Diagnostics, Lighthouse Group, Manganese Bronze, Michelmersh Brick Holdings, Personal Group, RGI International, VPhase, Finsbury Food, Petra Diamonds, Aberdeen Asset Management, QinetiQ.


There is no indication how much money Daily Mail owner Daily Mail & General Trust makes from the most-visited newspaper website in the world: Mail Online. But despite this still unknown fact, scribes at Investec rate DMGT a buy, ahead of its pre-close trading update tomorrow. It has sold the US-based Evanta conference business for £58m, and earlier this year sold its Australian radio joint venture. Investec analysts think both the sales produced a good lot of cash to be re-invested. Investec's analyst Steve Liechti said: "Management continues to refocus the portfolio to concentrate on core growth and drive a higher ultimate rating" and he reiterated his share price target of 578p.

Results/Updates: Albemarle & Bond, Augean, Bond International Software, InternetQ, Judges Scientific, KBC Advanced Technologies, PhotonStar LED Group, Close Brothers, CVS, Hargreaves Services, Netcall, Regenersis.


Last month house repair and insurance group Homeserve got traders spooked that the Financial Services Authority was set to release the results of its investigation into the group. But the rumours were wide of the mark and there are still no signs of the FSA report ahead of Homeserve's trading update on Wednesday. Analysts at Liberum Capital think the update will be "unexciting" and "unlikely – although not impossible – that there will be any clarification from the FSA." But the bid speculation that emerged earlier this year could resurface. Liberum did not "rule out an eventual bid from private equity" but said that any potential bidder would need greater clarification on Homeserve's business going forward after the FSA report into mis-selling.

Results/Updates: ACTA, Dillistone, Domino's Pizza, IQE, HMV, Icap, London Stock Exchange, S&U, Scisys.


Feeding canteen food to overseas miners, schoolchildren and the Army is still a pretty good business. Simon French at the broker Panmure Gordon said Compass Group offers "attractive investment qualities given its defensive, predominantly non-UK earnings". Panmure, which rates the stock a buy, raised its share price target for the company from 785p to 820p ahead of its trading update on Thursday. The pre-tax profit consensus for the group is £1.089bn.

Results/Updates: Fairpoint, Inditherm, Nationwide Accident Repair Services, SimiGon, Straight, WANdisco, Hansard Global, Indigovision, Pan African Resources, Euromoney Institutional Investor, Tate & Lyle, TUI Travel, Trinity Biotech.


Investors will be hoping there aren't any more own goals for five-a-side football operator Goals Soccer Centres on Friday. Shareholders did not approve the planned takeover by one of Canada's biggest pension funds, Ontario Teachers' Pension Plan, last month. Goals accepted a £73.1m bid, but then surprised the market by announcing that not enough independent shareholders passed the motion.

Goals, which operates 43 outdoor centres in the UK and one in the US, will update the market on its half-year results on Friday. It is also set for a windfall after winning an appeal against a tax ruling by HMRC earlier this month.

Results/Updates: Harvey Nash, Orchid Developments, Helphire, Electrocomponents, Hyder Consulting, Thomas Cook.

Economics Diary

Today German retail sales, import prices and business climate update.

Tomorrow BBA house purchase loans.

Wednesday CBI reported sales.

Thursday GDP (Q2 final revision); Current account (Q2); total business investment.

Friday GfK consumer confidence (September); Index of services.

people'It can last and it's terrifying'
Danny Welbeck's Manchester United future is in doubt
footballGunners confirm signing from Manchester United
footballStriker has moved on loan for the remainder of the season
footballFeaturing Bart Simpson
New Articles
Olivia Colman topped the list of the 30 most influential females in broadcasting
Kelly Brook
peopleA spokesperson said the support group was 'extremely disappointed'
The five geckos were launched into space to find out about the effects of weightlessness on the creatures’ sex lives
Andy Murray celebrates a shot while playing Jo-Wilfried Tsonga
TennisWin sets up blockbuster US Open quarter-final against Djokovic
Life and Style
techIf those brochure kitchens look a little too perfect to be true, well, that’s probably because they are
Arts and Entertainment
Hare’s a riddle: Kit Williams with the treasure linked to Masquerade
booksRiddling trilogy could net you $3m
Arts and Entertainment
Alex Kapranos of Franz Ferdinand performs live
music Pro-independence show to take place four days before vote
ebooksAn unforgettable anthology of contemporary reportage
news Video - hailed as 'most original' since Benedict Cumberbatch's
Life and Style
The longer David Sedaris had his Fitbit, the further afield his walks took him through the West Sussex countryside
lifeDavid Sedaris: What I learnt from my fitness tracker about the world
Arts and Entertainment
Word master: Self holds up a copy of his novel ‘Umbrella’
booksUnlike 'talented mediocrity' George Orwell, you must approach this writer dictionary in hand
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs Money & Business

SQL Implementation Consultant (VB,C#, SQL, Java, Eclipse, integ

£40000 - £50000 per annum + benefits+bonus+package: Harrington Starr: SQL Impl...

Head of IT (Windows, Server, VMware, SAN, Fidessa, Equities)

£85000 per annum: Harrington Starr: Head of IT (Windows, Server, VMware, SAN, ...

Technical Software Consultant (Excel, VBA, SQL, JAVA, Oracle)

£40000 - £50000 per annum: Harrington Starr: You will not be expected to hav...

SQL DBA/Developer

£500 per day: Harrington Starr: SQL DBA/Developer SQL, C#, VBA, Data Warehousi...

Day In a Page

'I’ll tell you what I would not serve - lamb and potatoes': US ambassador hits out at stodgy British food served at diplomatic dinners

'I’ll tell you what I would not serve - lamb and potatoes'

US ambassador hits out at stodgy British food
Radio Times female powerlist: A 'revolution' in TV gender roles

A 'revolution' in TV gender roles

Inside the Radio Times female powerlist
Endgame: James Frey's literary treasure hunt

James Frey's literary treasure hunt

Riddling trilogy could net you $3m
Fitbit: Because the tingle feels so good

Fitbit: Because the tingle feels so good

What David Sedaris learnt about the world from his fitness tracker
Saudis risk new Muslim division with proposal to move Mohamed’s tomb

Saudis risk new Muslim division with proposal to move Mohamed’s tomb

Second-holiest site in Islam attracts millions of pilgrims each year
Alexander Fury: The designer names to look for at fashion week this season

The big names to look for this fashion week

This week, designers begin to show their spring 2015 collections in New York
Will Self: 'I like Orwell's writing as much as the next talented mediocrity'

'I like Orwell's writing as much as the next talented mediocrity'

Will Self takes aim at Orwell's rules for writing plain English
Meet Afghanistan's middle-class paint-ballers

Meet Afghanistan's middle-class paint-ballers

Toy guns proving a popular diversion in a country flooded with the real thing
Al Pacino wows Venice

Al Pacino wows Venice

Ham among the brilliance as actor premieres two films at festival
Neil Lawson Baker interview: ‘I’ve gained so much from art. It’s only right to give something back’.

Neil Lawson Baker interview

‘I’ve gained so much from art. It’s only right to give something back’.
The other Mugabe who is lining up for the Zimbabwean presidency

The other Mugabe who is lining up for the Zimbabwean presidency

Wife of President Robert Mugabe appears to have her sights set on succeeding her husband
The model of a gadget launch: Cultivate an atmosphere of mystery and excitement to sell stuff people didn't realise they needed

The model for a gadget launch

Cultivate an atmosphere of mystery and excitement to sell stuff people didn't realise they needed
Alice Roberts: She's done pretty well, for a boffin without a beard

She's done pretty well, for a boffin without a beard

Alice Roberts talks about her new book on evolution - and why her early TV work drew flak from (mostly male) colleagues
Get well soon, Joan Rivers - an inspiration, whether she likes it or not

Get well soon, Joan Rivers

She is awful. But she's also wonderful, not in spite of but because of the fact she's forever saying appalling things, argues Ellen E Jones
Doctor Who Into the Dalek review: A classic sci-fi adventure with all the spectacle of a blockbuster

A fresh take on an old foe

Doctor Who Into the Dalek more than compensated for last week's nonsensical offering