All the major business events coming up in the week ahead
For your Diary: Applegreen results; UK unemployment stats; German inflation; Photonics conference
Bob Etchingham, CEO of Applegreen; the company is expected to post strong results this week. Photograph: Cyril Byrne
Results: Associated British Foods, Manchester Utd.
Indicators: US consumer inflation expectations (Aug).
Meetings: Creditors meeting of Niall Quinn’s Alphasat Communications.
Indicators: Irish construction PMI (Aug), residential property prices (Jul); UK inflation (Aug), PPI input/output (Aug), retail price index (Aug).
Meetings: Future in Medtech Ireland 2017 (Croke Park, Dublin 3); Gori Yahaya of Google’s Digital Garage training platform will give keynote address at the Northern Ireland Chamber of Commerce event (St George’s Market, East Bridge Street, Belfast); Guaranteed Irish Masterclass: Safeguarding Your Business on employment law (Guaranteed Irish, Fitzwilliam Place, Dublin 2).
The all pervasive spectre of Brexit looms in every corporate corner: even Applegreen’s onward and upward performance cannot escape its reach.
The petrol station chain will post half year results on Tuesday and they are expected to be strong given the company’s impressive growth strategy.
In a note ahead of the figures, Goodbody said commentary on the consumer demand in the UK would be of particular interest “given the heightened risk in recent months surrounding the UK consumer post Brexit”.
That will be of scant surprise for a company with a UK presence but will do little to derail what should be a positive Tuesday.
Goodbody predicts a “robust” performance with Ebitda (earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation) growth of about 18 per cent to €15.3 million.
“Performance in Ireland will have been aided by the continued economic recovery, which should lead to strong growth in food and store sales,” it said. “In addition, fuel margins should have been supportive during the period given declining price trends.”
Acquisitions in both the UK and US have helped whet appetites ahead of this week’s numbers.
Applegreen recently bought a network of seven sites in Britain from the Carsley Group at a cost of £21 million (€23 million at today’s rate). As Goodbody notes, given the location of these sites on the southern A1, traffic densities should be greater than in their Irish operations. All the while, building brand recognition in a key foreign market.
Indicators: Euro zone employment change (Q2), industrial production (Jul); UK unemployment (Jul), average earnings (Jul); German inflation (Aug); US core PPI (Aug).
Photonics? The technology behind the transmission of photons such as fibre optics may sound a little uninspiring but the sector is expected to be worth about €600 billion in the next three years.
That may encourage many to attend the biannual Photonics Ireland Conference in Galway from Wednesday, showcasing some of the latest research.
It is a gathering of academic and industry minds, and includes high-profile speakers from Ireland and abroad.
Photonics involves the generation, control and detection of light. This, conference organisers elaborate, “impacts our lives in many areas, including high-speed fibre optic communications, medical diagnostic sensors, the control of self-driving cars and emerging mass markets in the internet of things”.
Today, speed and usage of technology has almost hit capacity and photonics could remedy this, meeting the needs of communications, healthcare and security services development.
Among the guests is Dr Peter O’Brien, head of Photonics Packaging Research at Tyndall National Institute who will talk about his work with new international consortium PIXAPP, in which the EU has invested €15.5 million.
PIXAPP, say the organisers, is effectively creating the world’s first packaging line for PICs (the smallest chips in the world), enabling corporate entities, researchers and institutions to develop prototypes that can be packaged into devices and equipment for aerospace, defence, medical and agritech use.
Results: Ophir Energy interim.
Indicators: UK retail sales (Aug); US inflation (Aug).
Meetings: Knowledge Transfer Summit 2017 on commercialising research to benefit businesses (Mansion House, Dublin 2); Falcon Oil & Gas AGM (Conrad Hotel, Earlsfort Terrace, Dublin 2), Bank of England interest rate decision; Sales Institute Executive Masterclass (K Club, Co Kildare).
Indicators: Irish balance of trade (Jul), current account (Q2), GDP growth rate (Q2); Euro zone labour cost index and wage growth (Q2); German wholesale prices (Aug); US retail sales (Aug), industrial production (Aug), manufacturing production (Aug).
Meetings: IDI Irish Design Awards (Meeting House Square, Temple Bar, Dublin 2).