Daily Mail & General Trust (DMGT) saw its revenue rise five per cent after its business to business (B2B) operations outweighed another sluggish quarter for local advertising.
The results were in line with forecasts but its shares dipped almost three per cent to 577p. Advertising revenue at the group’s national titles rose six per cent in the quarter but slowed to just two per cent in January. Regional ad revenue fell six per cent in the quarter.
Its B2B business, including its separately listed Euromoney unit, saw sales rise 11 per cent.
Overall revenue climbed five per cent on an underlying basis to £497m. Its net debt stood at £910m, up from £862m at the end of the previous quarter. “We remain cautious about the medium-term outlook, given the external economic environment. Our focus will remain on investment to drive organic growth, while continuing to seek to improve operational efficiency and to reduce debt,” said a spokesman.
DMGT chief executive Martin Morgan said the firm has no ambitions to buy up any further regional titles but might be prepared to sell if the right offer arises.
He said: “We are not interested in putting fresh capital into that sector but we are open to any worthwhile approaches concerning consolidation. Our focus will remain on investment to drive organic growth.”