What matters this week
Woolworths just couldn’t hide itself from the press this week – everything from rumours of a BP buyout of the company’s Caltex petrol stations, Aldi having gained enough transaction and scale to be a major disrupter (aka bring down those prices, and profit margins), the imminent release of a Fair Work Ombudsman investigation into underpayment of trolley collectors, and finally the company’s 5-year turnaround being delayed by... staff turnover. The share price is down 20.1% FYTD.
While the Chinese are taking a liking to Virgin Australia – becoming a 13% shareholder, the same can’t be said for Blackmores. After recent detrimental Chinese tax/ import changes, this week it was revealed it has been a slow start for their baby formula offering. The company’s share price has fallen a third since its 4-Jan-16 peak.
Takeover offers featured this week. More on Patties Foods below. ALS Global had a roller-coaster week – down Monday (financial results release), down more Tuesday (not-very-well-received Investor Day presentation), halted Wednesday (takeover offer in the wings), and hugely up Thursday (rejected the offer as significantly undervaluing the company).
Overseas: Volkswagen’s first quarter profit fell 20%. With to-be-completed emissions scandal reviews, and settlements yet to come, more pain is expected.