DMGT and Future deliver strong trading statements

Publishers are tentatively more upbeat about their prospects if trading statements from DMGT and Future are an indication.

DMGT, owner of Euromoney Investor and Associated Newspapers, publisher of the Daily Mail and Metro, says underlying revenue is up 2% on last year although warns of steady decline in regional press operations.

Meanwhile, Future, which produces magazines such as T3 and Total Film , expects that the Group’s results for the year to 30 September 2010 will be in line with market expectations. It says that “trading patterns have continued to stabilise year on year”.

DMGT’s statement comes ahead of its financial year end on 3 October this year and covers the 11 month period to the end of August.

The publisher says that trading remains robust, with underlying growth from both B2B and consumer media businesses. It attributes the results to “positive revenue trends” and effective cost control.

DMGT says that is consumer operations are seeing underlying revenues up 1% on the same period last year and that higher national advertising revenues, together with the focus on cost control, will lead to “significantly higher profits” for the full year, compared to last year.

Associated Newspapers’ underlying revenues for the period were 3% up. Total underlying advertising revenues were up 6%, with those from both Associated’s newspaper and pure play digital operations up by 6%.

Total underlying advertising revenues have risen by 13% with newspapers up by 10% and pure play digital activities up by 22% for the quarter to September so far. The company reports strong growth across most display advertising categories.

Northcliffe Media, the regional press division, saw total revenues drop 6% with advertising revenues down 7%. For the quarter to September so far, advertising revenues are down 5% and the publisher partly attributes this to “the widely anticipated effects of reduced public sector advertising spend”.

Underlying revenues from the Group’s B2B operations for the period were 3% higher year on year.

The City has current expectations of pre-tax profit of £238 million and earnings per share of 46.1 pence.

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