The publisher of the Scotsman, Yorkshire Post and, since earlier this year, the i newspaper has been “triple-hit” by the UK’s Brexit vote, according to its chief executive Ashley Highfield.
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The company’s share price fell to 11.5p today, having crashed down from 27p on 23 June and 115p at the same time last year.
“I think undoubtedly small-cap companies with debt and an exposure to the UK solely have been triple-hit by Brexit,” he told City A.M. “We would drop as a greater percentage because you’ve got to look at our enterprise value, which includes the debt. And as a percentage, our enterprise value – debt plus equity – has fallen by a far lower percentage… In terms of actual value, it’s dropped by a couple of million quid.”
The company reported a 10 per cent year-on-year fall in revenue to £113.9m in the first half of 2016, a 12.5 per cent fall in earnings before interest, taxation, depreciation and amortisation (Ebitda) and a pre-tax loss of £12.3m.
Johnston Press bought the i from ESI Media for £24m earlier this year.
Highfield said the publisher’s newspapers have experienced an uplift in circulation as a result of the EU referendum. He added: “Interestingly, particularly with the i, that hasn’t fallen off since.”