Cost-cutting Guardian newspaper publisher reduces losses as online revenues jump 15 per cent

William Turvill
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Guardian Newspaper Changes to Mid-Size Format
Guardian Media Group is switching the Guardian and Observer newspapers to a tabloid format next year (Source: Getty)

The publisher of the Guardian newspaper today reported significantly cut losses for the year to April 2017.

The figures

Guardian Media Group, which also publishes Sunday newspaper the Observer, reported revenues of £214.5m, up two per cent from £209.5m last year.

Its digital turnover in the year was up 15 per cent, from £81.9m to £94.1m.

Operating losses after exceptional items, meanwhile, were £62.5m, an improvement on a loss of £100.4m in the year to April 2016.

Guardian Media Group also benefited in the year from the sale of a 22.4 per cent stake in FTSE 250 information business Ascential for £239m.

Over the year, the group’s endowment fund grew from £765m to £1.03bn.

Why it’s interesting

Guardian Media Group is in the middle of a cost-cutting scheme as it seeks to break even.

This has included hundreds of jobs cuts across the UK and US operations. Today’s accounts show that the group’s overall headcount fell by 115 over the year to 1,698 and that its wages and salaries total fell from £110.1m to £105.9m.

Also as part of the cost-cutting, the Guardian and Observer newspapers are to switch to a tabloid format from early next year.

What Guardian Media Group said

Chief executive David Pemsel said:

Despite the challenging market conditions faced by all news organisations around the world, our three-year strategy is well on track to achieve its financial goals and to secure the future of the Guardian. We are reducing our costs, growing new reader revenue streams, and developing our businesses in the US and Australia.

We have grown our digital revenues, and we are achieving strong growth in membership, subscriptions and contributions. More people are paying for Guardian journalism than ever before. This is helping to build a strong foundation from which we will continue to invest in some of the most trusted journalism in the world.

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