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Daily Mail & General Trust has reported a 9% fall in print advertising at the Daily Mail and Mail on Sunday in the final quarter of 2012, but Mail Online helped fuel a rise of more than 50% in digital ad revenues.The publisher’s national newspaper arm DMG Media, which shed 123 jobs during the period to take headcount to 3,719, reported a 7% year-on-year fall in total revenues to £204m in the three months to 30 December.
DMG Media, which was until recently known as Associated Newspapers, includes the following businesses: the Daily Mail; the Mail on Sunday; Metro; property sites Zoopla, jobsite and jobrapido; and daily-deals firm Wowcher.
Circulation revenues at its two national titles fell 6% in year on year in the quarter in what the publisher called a “weak market”, on Monday the price of the weekday Daily Mail was increased from 55p to 60p.
Print ad revenues fell by 9% in the three-month period, but improved as the quarter progressed, with total ad income down 4% thanks to DMGT’s burgeoning digital operations. The publisher appears to have had a solid amount of support from advertisers in the runup to Christmas, reporting that advertising revenues at its national titles were flat year-on-year in December.
DMGT said that the “print weakness” was offset by strong digital growth with online advertising from what it terms “companion websites”, which is mainly Mail Online, up 51%.
Northcliffe Media, which is being spun off into David Montogomery’s Local World with DMGT retaining a 38.7% stake in the publishing venture, reported an 8% fall in total revenues to £49m in the quarter.
Advertising revenues fell 9% year on year and circulation revenues fell 4%.
“There was a continued focus on efficiency and improvement of the profit margin,” the company said.
DMGT said it received £27m in proceeds from the sale of assets in the final quarter. The company received a further £62m in January from the sale of Northcliffe Media and Lapcom, its remaining Hungarian print business.
DMGT’s net debt rose from £613m at 30 September to £767m at 30 December, “mostly due to the usual seasonal cash outflows”.
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This article originally appeared on guardian.co.uk
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