Market Report: Competition fears force Aggreko to power down

Investors pulled the plug on Aggreko last night over fears its market leader status could be in jeopardy, leaving the temporary power supplier at the foot of the top-tier index.

The group, which will supply the electricity for next year's Olympics, moved 61p lower to 1,874p following the news that APR Energy – its closest competitor in the power generator market – is to be bought by Horizon Acquisition, the investment vehicle owned by Pizza Express co-founder Hugh Osmond.

The $855m (£527m) deal will see Horizon, whose shares were suspended at 950p, take APR's name when trading is resumed, expected to be by the end of September. It will also leave the company with $275m in cash to fund its expansion plans, prompting Numis Securities to cut its advice on Aggreko to "sell", warning the move may "herald a significant increase in competition".

"Although we believe there are sufficient growth opportunities for both groups," said the broker's analyst, Mike Murphy, "the hint of more competition as well as an alternative stock market play on the shortage of power in developing countries suggests there may be some profit-taking in Aggreko."

Overall, the FTSE 100 – which plummeted by more than 90 points on Friday – saw a small rebound of 7.66 points to close at 5,773.46, with continued caution over the global economic situation preventing a stronger bounce.

Takeover hopes fuelled the ascent of Eurasian Natural Resources (ENRC) to the top spot, as the miner shifted 34.5p to 776.5p following reports over the weekend that Glencore could be interested in making a potential offer worth £12 billion. Saying the commodities trader "will be keen to look at opportunities in the market for an acquisition", Guardian Stockbrokers' Atif Latif predicted that "merger and acquisition frenzy could return to the sector", and added ENRC's recent weakness meant Glencore may not be the only possible aggressor.

However, Collins Stewart said that "political ramifications make the deal unlikely", although the broker did concede an offer from Glencore for Kazakhmys' 26 per cent stake in ENRC was "more realistic".

The copper miner powered 26p to 1,235p as it agreed a $1.5bn loan from China which will be invested in its Aktogay deposit in Kazakhstan. Meanwhile, Glencore put on 14p to close at 523.4p, ahead of today's interim management statement, its first update since listing last month.

It may be good news for Spanish smokers, but the country's ongoing cigarette price war forced Imperial Tobacco to admit its full-year operating profit could be reduced by up to £110m as a result and the group shed 29p to 2,056p. Citigroup said a reversal of the price cuts would be unlikely, warning that "the pricing equilibrium [worldwide] has become more fragile for all the tobacco companies, as they now all want to boost market share".

After losing nearly 7 per cent last week, Smiths Group failed to finish ahead for the fifth consecutive session, edging back 1p to 1,122p. RBC did not help, reducing its target price to 1,000p following last Wednesday's interim management statement, and the broker also dealt a blow to those praying for a break-up, saying such a move was "neither likely or in shareholders' interests [in the] near term".



Investors were persuaded to take a punt on Ladbrokes on the FTSE 250, with the group jumping up 1.9p to 146.9p after Peel Hunt increased its advice to "buy". The broker said a number of factors, including the popularity of gaming machines, meant the time was "right to take a more positive stance on the land-based bookmakers", although its reiteration of William Hill's "buy" rating only prompted it forwards 1.5p to 218.7p.

The London Stock Exchange advanced 5.5p to 949p as the Maple Group – a consortium of Canadian banks and pension funds – launched its $3.8bn rival bid for the Toronto Stock Exchange. Elsewhere, market gossips continued to get excited about Northumbrian Water, with the latest revival of vague bid speculation pushing it up 4.9p to 387p.

BAA's announcement that its airports saw a 9.2 per cent year-on-year rise in traffic last month meant International Airlines Group and easyJet both gained altitude, climbing 2.5p to 224.8p and 2.4p to 354.9p respectively. The news prompted Panmure Gordon to highlight the "positive backdrop" for the Restaurant Group, whose chains – including Frankie & Benny's and Garfunkel's – operate in a number of airports, and the company ticked up 1.6p to 296.2p.



Down on the Alternative Investment Market, Sterling Energy dropped nearly 25 per cent after the explorer said its new well in Kurdistan was not able to produce gas at a commercial rate, knocking it back 10.5p to 35p.

At the other end, AssetCo – which provides London's fire engines – shot up 1.31p to 4.95p following the troubled outsourcer's announcement that it is once again in talks over a potential takeover with "a number of parties".

Voices
Scotland's First Minister Alex Salmond delivers his speech at the Scottish National Party (SNP) Spring Conference in Aberdeen, Scotland April 12, 2014.
voices
Arts & Entertainment
Jessica Pare as Megan Draper and Jon Hamm as the troubled, melancholy Don Draper
tvAnd six other questions we hope Mad Men series seven will answer
Life & Style
The new low cost smartphone of Motorola, 'Motorola Moto G', is displayed in Sao Paulo, Brazil on November 13, 2013. The smartphone, with dimensions 65.9mm W x 129.9mm H x 6.0 - 11.6mm D is equipped with a Qualcomm Snapdragon 400 with quad-core 1,2 GHz CPU, a 4.5-inch display and Android Operating System 4.3 and a suggested price of $ 179 USD.
techData assessing smartphones has revealed tens of millions of phones are at risk of being harvested
News
David Beckham is planning to build a stadium in Miami’s port for a new football team he will own
news... in his fight for a football stadium in Miami's port area
VIDEO
News
weird newsMan live-photographs cracking of mysterious locked box on Reddit
Sport
Oliver Giroud kisses the Arsenal badge after giving the Gunners the lead
sportArsenal 3 West Ham 1: Two goals from the German striker and one piece of brilliance from Giroud puts the Gunners back above Everton
News
Plans to decriminalise non-payment of television licence fees would cost the BBC £500m according to estimates drawn up within the Corporation
people
News
weird news
Arts & Entertainment
Seeing red: James Dean with Sal Mineo in 'Rebel without a Cause'
filmAs 'Rebel without a Cause' is re-released, Geoffrey Macnab reveals how its star James Dean perfected his moody act
News
Obesity surgery in rats has been found to change the way the body processes alcohol
news
Arts & Entertainment
Heads up: Andy Scott's The Kelpies in Falkirk
artThe Kelpies are the latest addition to a growing army of giant sculptures. But naysayers are asking what a pair of gigantic horse heads tells us about Falkirk?
Life & Style
US Airways has been at the centre of a Twitter storm after it responded to customer complaints with a graphic sexual image
techUS Airways takes an interesting approach to customer service
Arts & Entertainment
Philip Arditti as Yossarian and Christopher Price as Milo Minderbinder in Northern Stage's 'Catch-22'
theatre
Arts & Entertainment
The Purple Wedding: Joffrey and Margaery Tyrell tie the knot
TV The second episode of the hit series featured a surprise for viewers
Life & Style
Back to nature: women with body issues have found naked yoga sessions therapeutic
lifeDoing poses in the altogether is already big in the US, and now it’s landed here – in mixed classes
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition iPad app?
Independent Dating
and  

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

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs Money & Business

Management Consultancy - Operational Research Analysts

£35000 - £50000 per annum + Bonus + Benefits: Pro-Recruitment Group: You must ...

Corporate Actions Consultant - Market data, ISO15022, presales

£45000 - £60000 per annum + BONUS + BENEFITS: Harrington Starr: Corporate Acti...

Prudential Risk/Operational Risk Associate - London

£350 - £400 per day: Harrington Starr: An opportunity has arisen at a FCA regu...

PhD/MSc educated Operational Research Analysts - Consultancy!

£35000 - £50000 per annum + Bonus + Benefits: Pro-Recruitment Group: You must ...

Day In a Page

Homelessness: Why is the supported lodgings lifeline under threat?

Why is the supported lodgings lifeline under threat?

Zubairi Sentongo swapped poverty in Uganda for homelessness in Britain. But a YMCA scheme connected him with a couple offering warmth and shelter
A History of the First World War in 100 Moments: When the world’s biggest shed took over Regent’s Park

A History of the First World War in 100 Moments

When the world’s biggest shed took over Regent’s Park
The pain of IVF

The pain of IVF

As an Italian woman vows to keep the babies from someone else’s eggs, Julian Baggini ponders how the reality of childbirth is often messier than the natural ideal
Supersize art

Is big better? Britain's latest super-sized art

The Kelpies are the latest addition to a growing army of giant sculptures. But naysayers are asking what a pair of gigantic horse heads tells us about Falkirk?
James Dean: Back on the big screen

James Dean: Back on the big screen

As 'Rebel without a Cause' is re-released, Geoffrey Macnab reveals how its star perfected his moody act
Catch-22: How the cult classic was adapted for the stage

How a cult classic was adapted for the stage

More than half a century after it was published 'Catch-22' will make its British stage debut next week
10 best activity books for children

10 best activity books for children

Keep little ones busy this bank holiday with one of these creative, educational and fun books
Arsenal 3 West Ham United 1: Five things we learnt from the battle between the London sides

Five things we learnt from Arsenal's win over West Ham

Arsenal still in driving seat for Champions League spot and Carroll can make late charge into England’s World Cup squad
Copa del Rey final: Barcelona are paying for their complacency and not even victory over Real Madrid will put things right

Pete Jenson on the Copa del Rey final

Barcelona are paying for their complacency and not even victory over Real Madrid will put things right
Rafa to reign? Ten issues clay courts will serve up this season

Rafa to reign? Ten issues clay courts will serve up this season

With the tennis circus now rolling on to the slowest surface, Paul Newman highlights who'll be making the headlines – and why
Exclusive: NHS faces financial disaster in 2015 as politicians urged to find radical solution

NHS faces financial disaster in 2015

Politicians urged to find radical solution
Ukraine crisis: How spontaneous are the pro-Russian protests breaking out in Ukraine’s east?

Ukraine crisis

How spontaneous are the pro-Russian protests breaking out in Ukraine’s east?
A History of the First World War in 100 moments: The first execution at the Tower of London for 167 years

The first execution at the Tower of London for 167 years

A history of the First World War in 100 moments
Fires could turn Amazon rainforest into a desert as human activity and climate change threaten ‘lungs of the world’, says study

New threat to the Amazon rainforest:

Fires that scorch the ‘lungs of the Earth’
Liverpool, Chelsea and Manchester City: And the winner of this season’s Premier League title will be...

Who’s in box seat now? The winner of the title will be ...

Who is in best shape to take the Premier League prize?