Sales of carbonates and still soft drinks are in growth, having increased 5.2% and 1.4% respectively, according to latest figures from soft drinks firm Britvic.The company said it expected the GB soft drinks market to remain “relatively resilient” but the Irish market was “particularly challenging”, following steady growth in its GB and international markets and a contrasting fall in sales in Ireland.Britvic’s interim statement reported a total revenue increase of 2.1%, to £218.6m, for the 12 weeks to 21 December 2008, compared to the same period last year. Britvic Ireland saw a fall in revenue of 2.9% for the three months to 31 December compared to the same 07/08 period.The company said it is continuing to experience “volume and value share gains”, driven largely by the success of its core brands, such as Pepsi and 7Up.
Insurer Prudential has committed to fund a £1bn (€1.2bn) tidal power plant, one of hundreds of projects part of the UK government’s national infrastructure plan (NIP).Investing through its wholly-owned asset management arm M&G Investments, the insurer will act as a cornerstone investor in a project looking to build a hydro-power station in Swansea, South Wales.The completed project is estimated to cost £1bn and aims to become part of a network of tidal plants that could produce 8% of the UK’s electricity requirements.It is expected to open in 2018, with construction scheduled to begin early next year. Commitments from Prudential form part of the UK Government’s agreement with six of the largest insurer’s to spend £25bn on UK infrastructure.The agreement between HM Treasury and the insurers was made after clarifications of Solvency II regulations made the allocation to domestic infrastructure possible, the Government said at the time.Much of the £25bn was expected to be come from insurers’ annuity books, as the firms formed a significant section of the UK individual annuity market.Prudential’s move may alleviate concerns insurers would not be able to stand by their commitment.Three months after the £25bn agreement was announced, Chancellor George Osborne launched radical overhaul of the defined contribution (DC) at-retirement market, removing compulsory annuitisation for majority of savers.The change resulted in more than £1bn wiped off the value of insurers listed on UK stock markets, heavily reliant on the individual annuity business.The £12bn a year individual annuities market was expected to take a significant hit in value with savers now allowed fully withdraw savings as cash, or electing to use income-drawdown.However, alongside Prudential’s investment, Legal & General (L&G) also affirmed its commitment to the plan despite the hit and long-term impact on its individual annuities book.Michael Abramson, head strategic business for bulk annuities at L&G, said the insurer would use its bulk annuity arm to back the commitment as it expected its overall annuity book to grow.The number of insurers using bulk annuity business from defined benefit (DB) schemes to match falling individual writings is expected to grow after the Budget reforms.Legal & General today announced a £129m buy-in with the Unaic Pension Scheme, part of the Unilever group.
___Tampa Bay Lightning defenseman Victor Hedman won’t travel with the team to the NHL’s Eastern Conference “secure zone” in Toronto because of a personal matter. General manager Julien BriseBois said Hedman will go from his home to the rink and back and avoid the general public in Florida this week before joining his teammates.Hedman will undergo coronavirus testing daily, which is the protocol players, coaches and staff must follow in Toronto and the Western Conference hub city of Edmonton, Alberta. He’s expected to be able to practice upon arrival and play in Tampa Bay’s first playoff game Aug. 3.“He came to me and asked if we could grant him a few more days in Tampa to tend to a personal matter, so we worked out a protocol for him to be able to do that,” BriseBois said. “We’re just delaying his arrival.” July 26, 2020 Sun Devils coach Bob Bowman announced the teams will focus on preparing for the 2021-22 season and Olympic aspirations.The 2020 NCAA championships were canceled due to the coronavirus pandemic and the athletes were not granted an extra year of eligibility.Bowman, Olympic swimmer Michael Phelps’ personal coach, said Arizona State’s aquatic facilities have been closed during the pandemic, taking away on-campus training time.The swimming and diving season typically runs from September through March.___ ___French soccer club Guingamp said on Sunday that one of its staff members has tested positive for the coronavirus.The Brittany-based club said on Twitter that the squad’s activities were immediately suspended, and Guingamp is working with local health authorities on implementing the agreed protocol. Local newspaper Ouest-France reported earlier this week that a player at the second-tier side had also tested positive for the coronavirus.French clubs have resumed training and are playing friendly matches ahead of the new season. The Latest: ASU’s entire swim and dive teams to redshirt Associated Press Share This StoryFacebookTwitteremailPrintLinkedinRedditThe Latest on the effects of the coronavirus outbreak on sports around the world:___Arizona State’s entire swimming and diving teams will redshirt for the 2020-21 season to avoid the risk of missing two straight national championships. Cleveland Browns running back Dontrell Hilliard and safety Jovante Moffatt were placed on the NFL’s reserve/COVID-19 list before training camp opened.The team announced the moves on Sunday night. Cleveland’s veterans are scheduled to report Tuesday to the training facility in Berea, Ohio.illiard has played in 25 games for Cleveland since joining as an undrafted free agent in 2018. Last season, he rushed 49 yards with two touchdowns and led the team in kickoff return yardage (421).Moffatt signed as undrafted free agent out of Middle Tennessee State on May 5.The team said the reserve/COVID list is for players who have tested positive for coronavirus or are being “quarantined after having been in close contact with an infected person or persons.” The team is not permitted to comment further than the player’s roster status. The second division starts on Aug. 22.___More AP sports: https://apnews.com/apf-sports and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports