The Week Ahead: Shareholders to get cash return from Enterprise

In the past, the Enterprise chief executive Ted Tuppen has spent the huge amount of cash the business generates on buying groups of pubs, snapping up 4,000 outlets from Unique last year.

The trouble is, there are now few good pubs left to buy. Instead, shareholders can expect to find as much as £300m a year back in their pockets, probably in the form of higher dividends and share buy-backs.

In September, the Solihull-based group indicated that thirsty Britons had driven operating profits at least 8 per cent higher in its pubs over the past 12 months. That's slightly slower than at the half-way stage of the year, but analysts at UBS still expect 2005 profits of £301m, £73m better than last time.

Investors will be looking for any signal that the consumer slowdown or rising energy costs may hurt future profits. Enterprise will also have a platform to have its say on longer pub opening hours, which come into force this week.

TODAY: Results: Full year - Care UK; RM. Interims - Thus; Workspace.

TOMORROW: EasyJet shares flew to their highest for 18 months in the summer after the owner of Icelandair took a chunky stake, fuelling speculation that a takeover approach could be on the runway.

That distracted from solid trading in the year to the end of September, when the low-cost airline inflated its network to 187 routes out of 57 airports and shunned the levy of a fuel surcharge on flyers.

ABN Amro expects Stelios Haji-Ioannou's orange airline to post annual pre-tax profits of £66.7m, up from £62.2m a year ago.

The electricity distributor Viridian Group should unveil slightly better profits for the first half of its year too. Williams de Broë expects the Belfast-based company to notch up pre-tax profits of £57m, £1.2m better than last time.

Power transmission and distribution price controls coming into force in April 2007 are seen as key to Viridian's future success. Early signs are encouraging, the broker said.

SSL International is likely to unveil pre-tax interim profits of about £22m, £5m higher than in 2004, on the back of healthy sales of Durex in America and Eastern Europe and of its Scholl Party Feet across Europe. Last month, SSL said sales were 7 per cent ahead of last year at around £220m.

Results: Full year - Anglo Irish Bank; Enodis; easyJet; Enterprise Inns; Greencore; Innovation Group. Interims - SSL International; Viridian Group; ICAP; Great Portland Estates. Q3 - InterContinental Hotels; Signet.

WEDNESDAY: Results: Full year - Paragon. Interims - Johnson Matthey; Land of Leather; Speedy Hire; Synergy Healthcare; Radstone Technology. Q3 - Tomkins; Inmarsat.

THURSDAY: The commercial radio group GCap Media may unveil the sale of several of its local stations with half-year results. GCap - formed by a merger of Capital Radio and GWR - is believed to be considering disposals to pay for extra investment in its big-name stations, including Xfm, Capital FM and Classic FM, at a tough time for radio advertising.

In September, GCap revealed that revenues over the first six months of its year had fallen 9 per cent. Cost savings from the merger have surged to £25m from just £7.5m, and analysts want to know more before making fresh forecasts for the company.

Results: Full year - none. Interims - Bank of Ireland; United Utilities; British Land; GCap Media; Expro International; Imagination Technologies. Q3 - Kesa Electricals.

FRIDAY: Tesco's chief executive Sir Terry Leahy is due in India this week, where Britain's most successful retailer is lobbying hard to be allowed access to its huge and expanding market.

That will send shivers down the spines of rivals that Tesco is already outpacing by a country mile.

Third-quarter figures are likely to top anything from other food retailers, with analysts expecting like-for-like sales to grow by 6 per cent. Its international business should be doing better still, with sales likely to be a fifth better on the back of quicker opening of new stores.

Some investors thought Fuller Smith & Turner - the brewer of ESP and London Pride - overpaid for the Hampshire-based George Gale this month. At £82.7m, the price was certainly a full one for a deal that also raised concerns that Fullers may now own too many pubs instead of having an even split with managed outlets.

Analysts are looking at interim results for signs of weakness suffered by others in the sector in recent months.

Results: Full year - None. Interims - Fuller Smith & Turner; Caffyns. Q3 trading - Tesco.

Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
Life and Style
Arts and Entertainment
The Ridiculous Six has been produced by Adam Sandler, who also stars in it
filmNew controversy after nine Native American actors walked off set
Ed Miliband, Nick Clegg and David Cameron appeal to the audience during the Question Time special
Danny Jones was in the Wales squad for the 2013 World Cup
rugby leagueKeighley Cougars half-back was taken off after just four minutes
Life and Style
Google celebrates Bartolomeo Cristofori's 360th birthday
techGoogle Doodle to the rescue
Life and Style
The original ZX Spectrum was simple to plug into your TV and get playing on
techThirty years on, the ZX Spectrum is back, after a fashion
ebooksA celebration of British elections
  • Get to the point
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

Recruitment Genius: Claims Administrator

£16000 - £18500 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is an excellent opportunit...

Recruitment Genius: Senior SEO Executive

£24000 - £28000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A Senior SEO Executive is requi...

Recruitment Genius: Online Customer Service Administrator

£16000 - £18000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: An Online customer Service Admi...

Recruitment Genius: Digital Marketing Executive

£18000 - £22000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This global, industry leading, ...

Day In a Page

Fishing for votes with Nigel Farage: The Ukip leader shows how he can work an audience as he casts his line to the disaffected of Grimsby

Fishing is on Nigel Farage's mind

Ukip leader casts a line to the disaffected
Who is bombing whom in the Middle East? It's amazing they don't all hit each other

Who is bombing whom in the Middle East?

Robert Fisk untangles the countries and factions
China's influence on fashion: At the top of the game both creatively and commercially

China's influence on fashion

At the top of the game both creatively and commercially
Lord O’Donnell: Former cabinet secretary on the election and life away from the levers of power

The man known as GOD has a reputation for getting the job done

Lord O'Donnell's three principles of rule
Rainbow shades: It's all bright on the night

Rainbow shades

It's all bright on the night
'It was first time I had ever tasted chocolate. I kept a piece, and when Amsterdam was liberated, I gave it to the first Allied soldier I saw'

Bread from heaven

Dutch survivors thank RAF for World War II drop that saved millions
Britain will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power - Labour

How 'the Axe' helped Labour

UK will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power
Rare and exclusive video shows the horrific price paid by activists for challenging the rule of jihadist extremists in Syria

The price to be paid for challenging the rule of extremists

A revolution now 'consuming its own children'
Welcome to the world of Megagames

Welcome to the world of Megagames

300 players take part in Watch the Skies! board game in London
'Nymphomaniac' actress reveals what it was really like to star in one of the most explicit films ever

Charlotte Gainsbourg on 'Nymphomaniac'

Starring in one of the most explicit films ever
Robert Fisk in Abu Dhabi: The Emirates' out-of-sight migrant workers helping to build the dream projects of its rulers

Robert Fisk in Abu Dhabi

The Emirates' out-of-sight migrant workers helping to build the dream projects of its rulers
Vince Cable interview: Charging fees for employment tribunals was 'a very bad move'

Vince Cable exclusive interview

Charging fees for employment tribunals was 'a very bad move'
Iwan Rheon interview: Game of Thrones star returns to his Welsh roots to record debut album

Iwan Rheon is returning to his Welsh roots

Rheon is best known for his role as the Bastard of Bolton. It's gruelling playing a sadistic torturer, he tells Craig McLean, but it hasn't stopped him recording an album of Welsh psychedelia
Russell Brand's interview with Ed Miliband has got everyone talking about The Trews

Everyone is talking about The Trews

Russell Brand's 'true news' videos attract millions of viewers. But today's 'Milibrand' interview introduced his resolutely amateurish style to a whole new crowd
Morne Hardenberg interview: Cameraman for BBC's upcoming show Shark on filming the ocean's most dangerous predator

It's time for my close-up

Meet the man who films great whites for a living