LONDON (Reuters) - A burst of Olympics-related advertising is boosting revenue at Britain’s Daily Mail mid-market tabloid, its publisher said on Wednesday, as the London Games prompt advertisers who would usually use television to switch to print and online channels.
Daily Mail & General Trust Plc (DMGOa.L) said the fact that the Games were being shown on the publicly funded BBC BBC.UL rather than ad-driven ITV (ITV.L) meant spending was gravitating towards its titles.
“The newspaper is performing strongly with the Olympics,” Finance Director Stephen Daintith said on an analyst call. “A number of our customers are, in the absence of ITV showing the Olympics, looking to the leading national newspapers, like the Daily Mail, to reach the audience.”
Daily Mail & General sees the Olympics and the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee celebrations in June providing a one-off benefit of between five and 10 million pounds to the company.
“Given recent trading, it’s probably towards the higher end of that range. We are picking up what would be TV revenues,” Daintith said.
The first three weeks of July had shown a 3 percent growth in advertising revenue at its national newspaper business, the company said.
Analyst Ian Whittaker at brokerage Liberum said July’s figures were surprisingly strong, adding that they “fly in the face of the gloom on the TV advertising market.”
Shares in Daily Mail & General Trust, which in June dropped out of Britain’s FTSE 250 mid-cap index due to a technicality connected to the classification of its shares, traded up 1 percent to 436.5 pence at 10:07 a.m. British time, valuing the company at about 1.7 billion pounds.
Underlying revenues from its Daily Mail and Mail on Sunday titles grew 4 percent in the three months to July 1, as more newspapers were sold, reversing a decline in the second quarter, and helped by strong advertising sales linked to the newspaper’s website, one of the most popular websites in the world
The website posted a 69 percent jump in quarterly underlying advertising sales compared with the year earlier period.
“I wouldn’t want to pretend that this quarter is a complete inflexion point, but it’s certainly encouraging to see that digital advertising growth is starting to really offset the declines in print advertising,” Daintith said.
Revenues from print advertising have been in decline at media groups across the western world for some years, as sales of newspapers decline and digital advertising revenues fail to make up the difference.
Daily Mail & General said its outlook for the year was unchanged, having forecast that full-year earnings would grow when it reported interim results in May.
The group, which also prints a string of regional titles and has a business-to-business publishing division, posted revenue of 509 million pounds in its third quarter, up 4 percent from last year on an underlying basis.
Its business-to-business publishing unit posted revenue growth of 7 percent, while its events division saw sales soar 22 percent after a robust showing at its Global Petroleum Show.
The outlook at financial publisher Euromoney (ERM.L), in which Daily Mail & General owns a 68 percent stake, was less rosy, with the company flagging that weaker markets could impact its fourth-quarter results.
Editing by Rhys Jones and David Holmes