Magners Original

An activist hedge fund has called for the break-up or sale of C&C Group, saying the drinks company is a “perennial underperformer” that suffers from a combination of “structural and self-inflicted” problems (The Times £).

In a letter to the board, hedge fund Engine Capital urged it to launch a strategic review and find a potential buyer, with private equity seen as an option (The Mail).

Carlsberg moved a step closer to a takeover of Britvic after PepsiCo confirmed it would not seek to block the £3.1bn deal (The Times £).

The Danish drinks giant said in a statement on Monday that PepsiCo had agreed to waive a change of control clause in its bottling arrangements with Britvic, thereby making a potential takeover of the Tango maker more attractive (Mail).

The business editorial in The Guardian argues that Britvic should play hardball. “The J2O and Robinsons maker’s shares are on the rise – so it is well placed to hold out for a sweeter deal,” the paper writes.

The Mail thunders that ‘Britvic must stand firm and see the Danish raiders off the field of combat’. 

The Grocer examines in detail why Carlsberg tabled a £3bn bid for Britvic, and why the soft drinks maker knocked it back. Read the analysis in full here.

Ocado Group cut almost 1,000 jobs last year in an effort to reduce costs and drive profitability in a tougher online grocery market (The Times £).

Aldi faces the threat of fines of up to £600m in Australia as the country’s left-wing government mounts a clampdown on supermarkets (Telegraph £).

UK-based ecommerce group THG has agreed to sell its luxury goods websites to Sports Direct owner Frasers as part of a new tie-up, as it seeks to streamline its portfolio (The Financial Times £).

Mike Ashley’s Frasers Group has forged a deal under which THG will become the first third-party retailer to use its buy-now, pay-later product (The Times £).

THG on Monday said it had sold sites including Coggles to Frasers as part of a partnership deal that also includes Frasers using THG’s technology in some parts of its business (The Guardian).

The deal was announced alongside a new wide-ranging partnership, which will see the firms collaborate on areas including the MyProtein brand and third-party ecommerce platform THG Ingenuity (Mail).

The Lex column in the Financial Times (£) reckons the UK high street will fall into ever fewer hands. “Consolidators such as Frasers and Next have significantly outperformed the wider market over the past year,” it writes.

The Midas shares column in the Mail tips Tesco and says shares are still below their peak despite rocketing 50%.

English farmers are reconsidering voting Tory over ‘botched’ Brexit (Financial Times £).