After Marks & Spencer chief executive Stuart Rose backtracked over suggestions that he was interested in a bid for supermarket giant Sainsbury's, other potential suitors were given an ultimatum by The Takeover Panel this week. Private equity firms including CVC, Kohlberg Kravis Roberts and The Blackstone Group now have until April 13 to make a move. Sainsbury's shares rose 21.5p to 539p and M&S's fell 11.5p to 664p.
In sportswear, Sports Direct's shares continued to fall after a positive debut on the market last week, dropping 9.25p to 271.75p.
Meanwhile, value chain Primark was set to be the target of store protests this weekend from campaign group People & Planet, which accuses the retailer of encouraging lower wages and labour standards. Shares at owner ABF, however, rose 12.5p to 833.5p.