Abramovich gets £100m richer as steel maker pays dividend
Some would say Roman Abramovich, one of Russia’s richest men and the owner of a £308m superyacht, has had his fair share of fortune, but he once again landed on his feet yesterday.
Some would say Roman Abramovich, one of Russia's richest men and the owner of a £308million superyacht, has had his fair share of fortune in this life, but the oligarch once again landed on his feet yesterday.
The Chelsea FC owner now looks set to add around £100million to his £6.4billion fortune after steel maker Evraz, in which he owns a 31 per cent stake, announced a £331million interim dividend in its six-month figures – its first payment since 2014.
What's more, the news comes just days after it was revealed that Abramovich may be headed towards a costly divorce from his third wife, Dasha Zhukova, after almost a decade of marriage.
Evraz announced a dividend of $0.30 a share in its first-half results yesterday as higher coal and steel prices pushed total earnings up 100 per cent to £890million.
Roubles in: Roman Abramovich looks set to add around £100m to his £6.4bn fortune after steel maker Evraz, in which he owns a 31 per cent stake, announced a £331m interim dividend
The firm stopped paying dividends in 2014 as part of a drive to reduce debt. Shares increased by 2.1 per cent, or 5.5p, to 270.8p.
Meanwhile, the FTSE drifted further away from record highs yesterday, falling 1.4 per cent, or 108.12, to 7389.94.
It was dented by a number of firms which began trading without a dividend.
These included BT, which fell 4.6 per cent, or 14.4p, to 298.9p, Royal Dutch Shell, which was down 2.2 per cent, or 49.5p, to 2163.5p, and Lloyds, down 3.1 per cent, or 2.1p, to 64.83p.
STOCK WATCH - EVR HOLDINGS
EVR Holdings, the virtual reality start-up backed by pop star Adele, secured licences to distribute content via its virtual reality music app MelodyVR in Germany, Ireland, Holland, Sweden, Greece, Belgium, Switzerland and the UK.
MelodyVR, which is being tested ahead of a full launch, allows fans to watch gigs on headsets, and has already signed agreements with music industry giants Warner, Universal and Sony.
Shares rose 5.3 per cent, or 0.38p, to 7.5p.
Furniture maker DFS Furniture sank after an uncertain UK economic environment and unexpected general election results – combined with hot weather – led punters to spend less on big items like sofas.
Revenues in the second half of its trading year fell 4 per cent on the previous year due to 'very challenging' conditions, resulting in growth of just 1 per cent over the 12-month period ended July 29.
The group warned that earnings will be at the low end of the £82-87million range given as part of a profit warning two months ago. Shares sank 8.5 per cent, or 19.5p, to 211p.
Bakery chain Greggs was riding high after a tasty upgrade from analysts at Berenberg.
With Greggs maintaining strong growth over the first half of the year, Berenberg said that the company was well placed to deal with its tough consumer environment and expects it to rapidly increase shop numbers.
As a result, it upgraded Greggs to 'buy' from 'hold' and increased its price target by 27 per cent to 1300p. Shares in Greggs rose 5.1 per cent, or 57p, to 1174p.
Despite posting a strong set of results, brick maker Ibstock was the FTSE 350's worst performer after its chief executive and chief financial officer sold a combined £10.8million worth of shares.
It posted a 2.7 per cent jump in profit over the first half to £38.9million, while revenues rose 8.7 per cent to £228.3million.
But shares slipped after chief executive Wayne Sheppard sold 2.5million shares at 241p each – totalling £6million – while finance boss Kevin Sims also sold 2million shares at 241p, netting £4.8million
Ibstock shares dipped 6.2 per cent, or 15.4p, to 232.5p.
Global recruitment firm PageGroup slipped after reporting a 2.3 per cent drop in profits at its UK business to £73million in the first half of the year.
The group put this down to uncertainty stemming from last year's Brexit vote, which it says has affected its clients' decision-making. Shares fell by 2 per cent, or 10.1p, to 490.4p.
HC Slingsby, which makes hand and pallet trucks to help with lifting in warehouses, rose by a staggering 247.4 per cent, or 117.5p, to 165p yesterday as it returned to profit.
After posting a £400,000 loss in the first half of 2016, the firm made £100,000 in the first six months of 2017 after cutting costs and reviewing its marketing strategy.