FT Monday 21st July 2014

1. Tesco replaces Philip Clearke as CEO with Unilever man

The board of Tesco, Britain’s biggest supermarket, has decided to part company with its CEO Philip Clarke. Clarke has been at Tesco for forty years, however his loyalty has not been repaid and it was decided that it was time for a change. Mr Clarke took over the running of Tesco in 2011, but has been accused of failing to find a coherent strategy. Sales and profit forecasts for Tesco were once more below expectation for this upcoming quarter, which is thought to be the reason why the board decided to make the change. The incoming CEO is Unilever’s Dave Lewis, who is expected to perform a full review of Tesco’s business. Tesco has several overseas operations that could be sold, and it also must look to fight off the challenge of low cost supermarkets Aldi and Lidl, which have significantly challenged Tesco in the UK market.

2. Huawei back British tech company XMOS

Emerging smartphone company Huawei has invested in a British technology company, XMOS. Huawei has taken part in XMOS’s latest funding round that is thought to have raised $26m. Huawei invested along with German company Bosch and American technology maker Xilinx in a funding round that is thought to value the company at $100m. Huawei has been restricted in its attempts to grow outside of its native China. The founder of the company, Ren Zhengfei is a former officer in the People’s Liberation Army, and many are suspicious of his ties to the Chinese government and the implications that has on data that is collected by the company. A US congressional report has declared Huawei’s expansion plans as a “threat to national security”, and Australia and Germany have both restricted Huawei in its attempts to invest in national companies. The UK has offered a much warmer welcome however, with David Cameron delighted by Huawei’s commitment to invest £1.3bn in its operations in the country.


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