Flexible workspace provider IWG has seen an uptick in demand from companies that embrace hybrid working, while seeking to bring down their real estate costs and keep employees happy. Landlords are also turning to IWG, the company said in a trading update this morning, as property owners see a chance of maximising returns while many tenants shun committing to long, expensive leases.
(Bloomberg) — Flexible workspace provider IWG has seen an uptick in demand from companies that embrace hybrid working, while seeking to bring down their real estate costs and keep employees happy. Landlords are also turning to IWG, the company said in a trading update this morning, as property owners see a chance of maximising returns while many tenants shun committing to long, expensive leases.
Here’s the key business news from London this morning:
In The City
IWG Plc: The Regus owner said it signed nearly as many contracts with landlords in the first half of 2023 than in the whole of last year.
- Still, the company which makes a big part of its revenue in US dollars, also flagged headwinds from currency effects and strong competition. It confirmed its profit and net debt guidance for the year.
Glencore Plc: The trading giant reported a steep drop in first-half profit and slashed returns to its shareholders after disappointing Chinese growth weighed on commodity prices, while the volatility that its traders thrive on has eased dramatically since last year.
- Glencore reported first-half core earnings of $9.4 billion, half the record number it posted last year, although that still marks one of its best-ever performances
Abrdn Plc: The money manager saw its assets drop to a new low after clients pulled more money from its funds.
- “The business has been reshaped to deliver greater resilience, while getting set to take advantage of fast moving sectoral and macroeconomic factors,” said Chief Executive Officer Stephen Bird, who has been trying to diversify the firm away from purely traditional asset management, adding there’s “still work to do to complete our transformation”
HSBC Holdings Plc drew criticism from MPs after its head of public affairs accused the UK government of being “ weak” by following US policy on China. It isn’t the first time British politicians have taken aim at HSBC.
Meanwhile, a jobs boom in Britain’s seaside towns is running out of steam as the cost-of-living crisis and the allure of cheap holidays in Europe dampen interest in the nation’s once grand resort destinations.
In Case You Missed It
Here’s a closer look at Stability AI: The London-based startup had its breakout success with Stable Diffusion, an artificial intelligence model that enables users to create uncanny and sometimes startlingly realistic images based on prompts of just a few words. Now, the company risks ceding its edge in the booming field of generative AI.
Gambling giant Flutter Entertainment Plc is among the companies scheduled to update the market tomorrow.
Flutter was ahead of the curve in implementing safer-gambling measures before the UK government in April announced tighter rules for the sector, and will see a limited hit to revenue, says Bloomberg Intelligence’s Conroy Gaynor.
Investors will instead focus on whether Flutter manages to become profitable in the US after the country made a U-turn on gambling, which had been largely illegal in most states.
For a more considered take on the UK’s economic and financial news, sign up to Money Distilled with John Stepek.
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