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Ex-Aston Martin boss not angry after IPO

STOCK TO WATCH: The ex-Aston Martin boss doesn’t look angry after an IPO

The 2018 Aston Martin IPO was a black spot in the city and a painful place for shareholders, but former boss Andy Palmer seems optimistic.

The automotive veteran – who presided over an eye-watering drop in stock price before being ousted in May – is now calling for industry investment in his new role on the board of Slovakia’s electric car battery startup InoBat Auto.

Palmer says he has not spoken to Lawrence Stroll, who took over at Aston Martin, since he left and has no regrets about his days there.

Sore spot: Andy Palmer says he hasn't spoken to Lawrence Stroll, who took the wheel at Aston Martin, since he left

Sore spot: Andy Palmer says he hasn’t spoken to Lawrence Stroll, who took the wheel at Aston Martin, since he left

‘Don’t look back angry, someone sang once,’ he says, referring to the Oasis hit.

Let’s look to the future. I sleep very easily with what I did at Aston. I tried my best. It is now a new regime, I have moved on. ‘

Aston’s investors may not be so willing to forgive and forget.

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Speaking of departed bosses, venerable former British Airways chief Keith Williams is optimistic about the airline’s future despite the massive aviation crisis.

Williams, who now heads another UK institution in Royal Mail, comments, ‘I am an optimist about BA. In many ways, the cheapest form of consolidation is when other airlines are in trouble. ‘

He added that the finances of British Airways’ parent company, IAG, are strong and that a planned acquisition of Spain’s Air Europa would complement the Iberia arm, which competes on routes to South America.

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Mitie shareholders will vote tomorrow to acquire rival Interserve’s facilities arm, after the terms of the deal were softened earlier this month.

Investors in the outsourcer are expected to follow the competition watchdog and show their thumbs up.

The question will ultimately be whether pugnacious Mitie chief Phil Bentley can successfully renew Interserve’s range of public sector contracts, including managing military bases abroad and cleaning up the Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office.

Most contracts at least have a while to go before the boss, known as Miami Phil, has to turn on his permanently tanned charm with officials.

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An eye-catching shape for the British fund star Mark Denham. The dome-shaped stock picker has six funds to his name after leaving Aviva four years ago for French Carmignac.

His European Leaders fund is up 25 percent this year. Ingredients include Sanofi, the French company that makes a Covid vaccine with GlaxoSmithKline, and the Danish pharmaceutical company Novo Nordisk.

But Denham tells me that bold bets on companies at the sharp end of Covid-19 – Spanish travel technology provider Amadeus and French caterer Sodexo – are also starting to pay off.

He added, “We are monitoring lockdown data as closely as anyone, but are looking for companies that can benefit from long-term recovery and investment in new technologies.”

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