Market Prognosis

A concise summary of the major macro events of the past 24 hours, and selected UK company-specific news.

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May 8, 2024

Informa demonstrates data’s value

UK Companies

Boohoo reported on a bruising year but said that its investment cycle is complete and expects to generate positive free cash flow in FY25.

Informa, a B2B media provider, said that all its businesses are performing ahead of or in line with 2024 targets. It increased its 2024 share buyback program by about 50% to £500m. It struck a deal with Microsoft worth over $10mn to use its data to improve the tech group’s AI systems. 

Informa’s AI data deal is the latest in an increasing trend of this type. The value of proprietary data is increasing as the AI giants look to feed their Large Language Models’ insatiable appetites. 

Renishaw sees signs of recovery in semiconductor equipment makers but lowers FY guidance. 

Wetherspoon’s like-for-like sales increased by 5.2% in the 13 weeks to 28 April. Sales increased by 3.3% in the quarter and by 6.5% YTD. It has seen a steady recovery from the pandemic period. Tim Martin said that the gods of fashion have smiled upon Guinness, previously consumed by blokes my age but now widely adopted by younger generations. He added that free coffee refills are thought to be responsible for spontaneous exhibitions of breakdancing among retired customers. It expects FY profits to be at the top end of the range. 

XP Factory, the operator of theme leisure experiences such as Escape Hunt and Boom Battle Bar, updated on a strong end to the financial year, supported by double-digit like-for-like growth, demonstrating the appeal of the lived experience as well as the allure of alcoholic refreshment. 

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