A NEW REPORT from finance marketing consultancy Brand Finance lauds Cadbury Schweppes as the Square Mile’s favourite public company. In a poll of over 150 City analysts and sixty investor relations di-rectors within leading companies, the confectionery and soft drinks group came top of the pops for the way in which it manages its brands and investor relations.

Respondents were asked to rate companies according to market investment, commitment to brand-building, provision of adequate information on marketing performance, and focus on shareholders. With a maximum possible score of 35, Cadbury scored 31.5 with Lloyds TSB trailing by a whisker at 31.2; Centrica came third with 30 and WPP Group fourth with 29.8. Languishing at the other end of the scale were P&O Group with a scant 13.3, regional brewer Greenalls with 13.7 and Allied Textiles, 15.

The survey also reflected a wide divergence of opinion between analysts and investor relations directors as to whether companies should publish more detailed information on marketing expenditure: 75% of analysts believed they should do so, compared with a mere 25% of investor relations directors.