Food delivery giant Deliveroo has picked London for its hotly anticipated stock market float this year. The tech firm’s founder and chief executive, Will Shu, had been looking at listing its shares in New York. (The Daily Mail)

Next’s chief executive Simon Wolfson is joining the board of Deliveroo, the food delivery service gearing up for a multibillion-pound float, in his first external directorship during his three decades at the retailer (The Financial Times £). Deliveroo has drafted in the Next boss, Simon Wolfson, as a non-executive director in a significant coup before the takeaway delivery company’s stock exchange listing (The Guardian). The boss of Next has joined the board of Deliveroo as the food delivery company puts the finishing touches to its plan for a stock market float (The Times £).

The Guardian’s Nils Pratley writes: “That’s a quick way to enhance your credibility as a flotation candidate: hire Next’s Simon Wolfson, who tends to appear at, or close to, the top of those “most admired chief executive” lists, as a non-executive director. It’s a mini-coup for Deliveroo. Wolfson hasn’t taken an outside non-executive gig previously and will have given the food delivery firm’s tyres a hard kick before signing up.” (The Guardian)

People who are locked down have been turning to comfort food and the maker of Mr Kipling cakes and Bisto gravy has increased its profit forecast after a rapid rise in online sales in the third quarter (The Times £). Premier Foods, maker of Mr Kipling cakes and Bisto gravy, expects a sharp rise in trading profit after consumers stuck at home turned to its familiar brands (The Financial Times £). A rising fondness for Bisto gravy and Sharwood’s cooking sauces enabled Premier Foods to record much higher sales towards the end of last year (The Daily Mail). Online demand for products from gravy and cooking sauces to electrical appliances enjoyed a boost during the stay-at-home festive period, latest trading updates have revealed (Sky News).

Ministers will be able to approve the import of animal and agricultural products of a lower standard than currently permitted in the UK, after attempts to amend the trade bill failed. (The Guardian)

Kwasi Kwarteng has dismissed border delays and the rising cost of transporting goods to Europe as “teething problems” rather than a consequence of Brexit. (Sky News)

The government has unveiled details of a £23m fund to support fishing firms as it tries to quell industry anger over Brexit border delays. (The BBC)

Hotel Chocolat reported a rise in sales after Britain gorged on luxury chocolate over Christmas. (The Times £)

JD Wetherspoon underlined the parlous state of the pub industry as it announced a share placing of almost £100 million, its second equity raising since the start of the pandemic (The Times £). Wetherspoon, the UK pub company, has become the first UK hospitality group to tap shareholders for fresh funds twice during the pandemic while it battles to survive lockdown closures (The Financial Times £). Pub group Wetherspoons has gone cap-in-hand to investors for the second time since the pandemic began as it attempts to keep its head above water (The Daily Mail). Pubs driven to financial ruin by the impact of the pandemic could be bought up on the cheap under plans being drawn up by JD Wetherspoon as well as by a new venture fronted by the former boss of Greene King (The Guardian).

Hammerson has collected less than half the rent it is owed this quarter, adding to pressure on the shopping centre owner, which has been severely hit by coronavirus. (The Financial Times £)

Clothing at Marks & Spencer could look different in the spring after it struck deals with four womenswear brands to bolster its online sales. (The Times £)

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