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Archant reports on a period of profit growth

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Archant announced a period of increased profitability for the first six months of 2010.

Against a background of continuing economic uncertainty, total operating profit before amortisation of intangible assets and exceptional items was £7.0m, up £2.0m on the same period in 2009, whilst total revenue for the six months to 3 July declined by £0.7m (0.9%), to £70.1m.

Archant chairman Richard Jewson (pictured above) said: “Our management have continued to exploit the opportunities presented by the changing trading environment whilst reducing operating costs by 4.1%, preserving cash and seeking new ways to develop our digital businesses.” Newspaper and printing turnover was 1.6% lower at £48.3m (2009: £49.1m) with small reductions in all major advertising categories, with the exception of property advertising which grew by 9.3%. Advertising revenues fell 4.1%. Newspaper publishing operating profit, at £6.3m (2009: £4.2m) was up 47.5%.

Magazine turnover remained static during the period at £21.7m whilst operating profits grew 18.9% to £1.6m (2009: £1.4m). Magazine property advertising revenues were up 30.4%. Subscription revenues grew by 5.7%.

Good progress continued to be made in the digital arena. Total digital revenues increased 25% and, during the period, six sites optimised for use on mobile devises were launched.

During the period the Group acquired the business of Kent on Sunday, an innovative publisher providing additional access to the county of Kent; it also launched Cambridge First an on line, digital and newspaper product in Cambridge and re-launched magazine titles in Leicestershire and Nottinghamshire.

“The spending cuts announced by the new government have already damaged business sentiment,” said Richard. “We continue to pursue process efficiencies whilst seeking new revenue opportunities in print and online by developing new products and services to meet the changing needs of our customers.”

© Archant Ltd 2013