Friday 11 January 2019 11:04 am

Media group Haymarket sees profits fall as it looks to digital to boost revenue

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Magazine publisher Haymarket today reported a steep drop in profits as it looks to invest in technology amid a shift to digital revenues.

The company posted an operating profit of £7.4m in the 12 months to the end of June, down from £16m the year before. Revenues also slipped from £173m to £164m over the same period.

Haymarket, which owns brands such as What Car and PR Week, said the figures take into account a large investment in an e-commerce platform for its automotive division.

But the publisher saw its earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortisation rise over 25 per cent to £3.5m.

Chief executive Kevin Costello said: “This set of results underlines real momentum in deploying our strategy of creating a balanced portfolio of diverse revenue streams in our chosen markets.

“We’re investing in innovative new revenue opportunities around paid content and events, as well as new e-commerce platforms – particularly in our automotive division.”

In 2017 Haymarket announced a £50m investment in digital technology, with a focus on creating a platform to connect car buyers with car dealers.

The firm recently sold motoring forum Piston Heads as part of a strategy to focus on the new and classic car markets.

Haymarket said 70 per cent of its revenues now come from digital, data and live activity, with half its total earnings coming from outside the UK.

Haymarket chairman Lord Heseltine said: “The results show a business in very sound financial shape and reflects the progress with our strategy, which continues to position us well for the future: investing in the company’s technology infrastructure to build diversified revenue streams around a raft of new opportunities.”