Digital grows 30% for Future - BikeBiz

Digital grows 30% for Future

Total revenue is down for publishing and media company, but digital revenue now makes up 44 per cent of total advertising
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Future's normalised revenues for the year dropped three per cent, from £121.9m in 2011 to £117.7m, normalised as in adjusted for the restructure of the US business. UK operating profits were up 13 per cent, though, to £9.3m.

The media company's preliminary results (for the year ended September 30th) also revealed a continuing upturn in digital revenue – up 30 per cent to £20.6m, meaning that digital advertising now makes up a whopping 44 per cent of Future's total advertising.

As referenced above, Future's US operations were significantly restructured in the 2012 financial year and are expected to return to profitability in 2013, Future said. Gross revenues from digital editions are now running at $1m per month and, the company added, visits to Future websites are up 70 per cent to over 50m global unique users per month – no doubt boosted by the launch of BikeRadar US.

Revenue from the UK now represent 81 per cent of the Group in revenue terms which 'continued to be resilient in tough market conditions with increases in digital revenues offsetting the declines in print'. As a result UK revenue was largely unchanged, from £96m in 2011 to £96.4m in 2012.

Future chairman Peter Allen said: "The new senior executive management has succeeded in refashioning the business and demonstrated that it has the strategic and execution skills to achieve further progress in the year ahead."

Chief executive Mark Wood added: "This has been a year of substantial progress for Future and the Group is now well positioned to grow and diversify revenues as a global digital business. Our US operations have been restructured and are heading for profit in 2013. We are a leading publisher in tablet markets and our online audience has grown by 70 per cent to more than 50 million unique users a month. These advances are opening new opportunities and we will accelerate Future's digital transformation in the year ahead."

Future's digital strategy is worth watching. The results reported that gross sales on Apple's Newsstand – since it launched just over a year ago in October 2011 – have hit over £6m. Earlier this year, BikeBiz spoke with group publishing director Richard Schofield about Future's digital ambitions and the launch of Cycling News HD on the iPad.

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