Compass to buy back £500m of shares
Compass Group is expected to outline plans to buy back £500m of shares when it announces its annual results this week.
The world's largest caterer will announce the move alongside its latest profit figures, which are forecast to exceed £1b, the Sunday Times reported.
Market analysts say that Compass is likely to use its strong balance sheet to return cash to its investors as well as fund new acquisitions.
Compass has spent more than £400m over the past year, making in-fill acquisitions of rival caterers around the world, as well as cleaning and security firms that have bolstered its full service offer.
The caterer has used its cash-pile to invest in bolt-on deals since Richard Cousins came on board as chief executive in 2006, and according to Credit Suisse Compass it is more than capable of returning cash to shareholders while sticking with this strategy.
Alongside the annual results, Compass is also likely to announce new business wins, such as a security contract with media group Thomson Reuters, and catering for Vodafone in Turkey and Dell in India.
Compass Group declined to comment.
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Compass completes acquisition of Turkey's Obasan >>
By Janie Stamford
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