Takeover saga lifts M&S as Sainsbury’s falters

Marks & Spencer stormed to the top of this week’s Reputation Monitor. While coverage of the ownership battle with Philip Green was mixed, on the whole it was seen as positive for M&S, indicating that the high street institution’s financial PR adviser Tulchan Communications has been earning its fee.

Analysts at the banks advising Virgin Mobile on its initial public offering opted for a price-to-earnings ratio significantly higher than competitors Vodafone or mmO2, driving the company to second.

Asda and Tesco both fell two places this week, but the supermarkets remained in the top ten for emphasising healthier eating in their latest price war.

Asda achieved a slight edge after it announced it was prepared to launch a standalone general merchandise store.

Sainsbury’s remained at the bottom of the table. It came under fire for its proposal to award ousted chairman Sir Peter Davis £2.4m in performance-based bonuses – for a year which culminated in a profits warning and a potential dividend cut.

Jarvis struggled after it revealed it had breached its banking covenants and racked up £230m of net debts.

Reputation Monitor is compiled from Thomson Intermedia’s National News Index, a measure of media sentiment excluding stock market reports and passing mentions.

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