The Week Ahead: Investors keen for news on Imperial’s suitors

Imperial Energy, the Russia-focused oil and gas explorer and producer, is due to report interim results this week and, with up to three predators on the prowl, investors are likely to look beyond the numbers for any news about progress in the race to acquire the company.

Imperial has acknowledged two approaches, believed to be from ONGC Videsh, the international arm of India's Oil & Natural Gas Corporation, and China's Sinopec, while recent reports have indicated interest from the Korea National Oil Corp (KNOC).

ONGC is believed to have offered 1,290p per share for the business, and reports in India indicate that it might increase the bid to 1,500p per share if Sinopec, which is yet to table an offer, counters its initial proposal. UBS, whose analysts weighed in on the situation last week, said that while management may not be able to comment given the sensitive nature of proceedings, "the current bid approach is likely to go ahead".

For more clues, tune in to Imperial on Thursday.

Today: The distribution group Bunzl is due to publish interim results and Evolution Securities forecasts an 11 per cent hike in pre-tax profits to £111.8m, and earnings per share of 23.2p. The interim dividend is expected to increase by 10 per cent to 6.4p. "The interims will show solid double-digit growth, and demonstrate the strengths of the business model in difficult economic backgrounds," Evolution said.

Evolution also weighed in on Aggreko, the support services group that is due to report interim results today, forecasting pre-tax profits of £68m with 16.7p in earnings per share.

"We expect European profits to be around 70 per cent higher in what is a seasonally weak trading period, whilst North American profits are expected to be flat at best as the slowing construction activity starts to affect parts of the business," the broker said.

Results/updates: Cairn Energy, Rio Tinto, Wood Group, Aggreko, Bunzl.

Tomorrow: The oil and gas services group Petrofac is due to publish interim results and Deutsche Bank is forecasting a clean net income of $133m, up 46 per cent year-on-year. "We believe investor focus will be around the company's contract pipeline outlook and its ability to maintain high utilization rates in the face of delayed project sanctioning (backlog has remained broadly flat since end of 2007)," the broker said.

Antofagasta, the FTSE 100-listed mining group, is due to publish interim results, and UBS is anticipating news of a special dividend of 15 cents per share, with an ordinary dividend of 4.5 cents. The broker also forecasts $1.5bn in earnings before interest and tax, and net earnings of $750m.

Also tomorrow, the car retailer Lookers is due to publish interim results, and Panmure Gordon is anticipating news of £14.4m in adjusted pre-tax profits, down from £18.1m in 2007. The interim dividend is forecast to come in at 1.8p, compared with 1.6p last year.

Results/updates: Tullow Oil, Secro, Johnston Press, G4S, Lookers, Antofagasta, Petrofac.

Thursday: The drinks giant Diageo is due to report full-year results and UBS is confident that the company will deliver its guidance of 9 per cent organic growth in earnings before interest and tax. Looking ahead, the broker expects investors to focus on management's outlook for 2009, which is "likely to be more cautious".

"There are headwinds building from ... rising US unemployment data, [and] ... we believe the weakening macro conditions in the UK, Spain and Ireland could have an impact on premium spirits consumption," UBS said.

Also on Thursday, the car retailer Pendragon is due to publish interim results and, given the deterioration in the new and used car market, Panmure Gordon expects the figures to be "down significantly" compared with last year.

"We have pencilled in Pendragon producing an adjusted pre-tax profit of £19m, which compares to £32.7m generated last year," the broker said, adding: "The key things we will be looking for are the state of its balance sheet, and whether it is in a position to survive during the next 12 months or so."

Results/updates: Premier Foods, Kazakhmys, Amec, Pendragon, Diageo, Imperial Energy.

Friday: The property website Rightmove is due to publish interim results at the end of this week and, given the problems in the housing market, Investec expects the focus to fall on the net decline in the company's estate agent customer base.

The broker also expects the company to be questioned about the potential business model threat from Property Live, the website due to be launched by the Association of Estate Agents and its 10,000-plus members in October.

"This website will be subscription free... clearly if successful (along with Globrix, a News Corp-funded ad based model) it could pose a significant threat to the underlying subscription nature and pricing power of the Rightmove offering," the broker said.

Results/updates: Bradford & Bingley, Stagecoach, PartyGaming, Rightmove.

Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
News
peoplePair enliven the Emirates bore-draw
Arts and Entertainment
tvPoldark episode 8, review
News
Britain's opposition Labour Party leader Ed Miliband (R) and Boris Johnson, mayor of London, talk on the Andrew Marr show in London April 26
General electionAndrew Marr forced to intervene as Boris and Miliband clash on TV
Arts and Entertainment
Ramsay Bolton in Game of Thrones
tvSeries 5, Episode 3 review
ebooks
ebooksA special investigation by Andy McSmith
  • Get to the point
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

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

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs Money & Business

Ashdown Group: Treasury Assistant - Accounts Assistant - London, Old Street

£24000 - £26000 per annum + benefits : Ashdown Group: A highly successful, glo...

Ashdown Group: Business Analyst - Financial Services - City, London

£50000 - £55000 per annum: Ashdown Group: Business Analyst - Financial Service...

SThree: Trainee Recruitment Consultant

£18000 - £23000 per annum + OTE £45K: SThree: At SThree, we like to be differe...

SThree: Trainee Recruitment Consultant

£20000 - £25000 per annum + competitive: SThree: Did you know? SThree is the o...

Day In a Page

Not even the 'putrid throat' could stop the Ross Poldark swoon-fest'

Not even the 'putrid throat' could stop the Ross Poldark swoon-fest'

How a costume drama became a Sunday night staple
Miliband promises no stamp duty for first-time buyers as he pushes Tories on housing

Miliband promises no stamp duty for first-time buyers

Labour leader pushes Tories on housing
Aviation history is littered with grand failures - from the the Bristol Brabazon to Concorde - but what went wrong with the SuperJumbo?

Aviation history is littered with grand failures

But what went wrong with the SuperJumbo?
Fear of Putin, Islamists and immigration is giving rise to a new generation of Soviet-style 'iron curtains' right across Europe

Fortress Europe?

Fear of Putin, Islamists and immigration is giving rise to a new generation of 'iron curtains'
Never mind what you're wearing, it's what you're reclining on

Never mind what you're wearing

It's what you're reclining on that matters
General Election 2015: Chuka Umunna on the benefits of immigration, humility – and his leader Ed Miliband

Chuka Umunna: A virus of racism runs through Ukip

The shadow business secretary on the benefits of immigration, humility – and his leader Ed Miliband
Yemen crisis: This exotic war will soon become Europe's problem

Yemen's exotic war will soon affect Europe

Terrorism and boatloads of desperate migrants will be the outcome of the Saudi air campaign, says Patrick Cockburn
Marginal Streets project aims to document voters in the run-up to the General Election

Marginal Streets project documents voters

Independent photographers Joseph Fox and Orlando Gili are uploading two portraits of constituents to their website for each day of the campaign
Game of Thrones: Visit the real-life kingdom of Westeros to see where violent history ends and telly tourism begins

The real-life kingdom of Westeros

Is there something a little uncomfortable about Game of Thrones shooting in Northern Ireland?
How to survive a social-media mauling, by the tough women of Twitter

How to survive a Twitter mauling

Mary Beard, Caroline Criado-Perez, Louise Mensch, Bunny La Roche and Courtney Barrasford reveal how to trounce the trolls
Gallipoli centenary: At dawn, the young remember the young who perished in one of the First World War's bloodiest battles

At dawn, the young remember the young

A century ago, soldiers of the Empire – many no more than boys – spilt on to Gallipoli’s beaches. On this 100th Anzac Day, there are personal, poetic tributes to their sacrifice
Dissent is slowly building against the billions spent on presidential campaigns – even among politicians themselves

Follow the money as never before

Dissent is slowly building against the billions spent on presidential campaigns – even among politicians themselves, reports Rupert Cornwell
Samuel West interview: The actor and director on austerity, unionisation, and not mentioning his famous parents

Samuel West interview

The actor and director on austerity, unionisation, and not mentioning his famous parents
General Election 2015: Imagine if the leading political parties were fashion labels

Imagine if the leading political parties were fashion labels

Fashion editor, Alexander Fury, on what the leaders' appearances tell us about them
Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka: Home can be the unsafest place for women

Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka: Home can be the unsafest place for women

The architect of the HeForShe movement and head of UN Women on the world's failure to combat domestic violence