Daily Mail trust optimistic for 2014 ad growth

Oliver Smith
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DAILY Mail & General Trust (DMGT), publisher of The Daily Mail and the morning freesheet Metro, has said it has made a solid start to the 2014 financial year, with advertising revenue already outperforming 2013 during the first seven weeks.

“We have entered the new financial year with our businesses performing well and in line with our expectations,” DMGT said in a statement.

The company yesterday reported profit up 10 per cent to £282m for the year ending 30 September, led by strong consumer and business-to-business growth.

Group revenues fell eight per cent to £1.8bn during the year, hit by the disposal of Northcliffe Media in December. On an underlying basis total revenue rose two per cent.

“We continued to refine and optimise our portfolio of businesses during the year with further strategic bolt-on acquisitions,” said chief executive Martin Morgan.

On the future of its print and web businesses DMGT said: “The absolute growth in digital advertising revenues [is] more than offsetting the decline in print advertising revenue.”

Liberum Capital media analyst Ian Whittaker reiterated a ‘buy’ rating with a target price of 950p: “Guidance for all their divisions looks from reassuring to very good. Double-digit like-for-like revenue growth at DMG Events and Information should help drive consensus upgrades, and stable consumer media revenues will reassure”

DMGT’s share price rose 2.6 per cent yesterday on the news to close at 862.5p a share.