FT publishing – which includes the Financial Times and FT.com – reported adjusted operating profit up 107 per cent year-on-year to £56 million on turnover up 23 per cent to £344 million.
The news came as its owner Pearson anounced a record adjusted operating profit up 14 per cent to £634 million for 2007 on sales up four per cent to £4.2 billion. Underlying sales are said to be up 6 per cent year-on-year.
Proft for FT Group – which also includes specialist financial data arm Interactive Data – was up 32 per cent to £153 million on turnover up 12 per cent to £688 million.
Pearson said it expects to continue to see profit growth at FT Group.
It said: ‘We have substantially increased our digital and subscription revenues and reduced our exposure to print advertising in recent years”.
In 2007, digital services accounted for 63 per cent of FT Group revenues, compared with 28 per cent in 2000 and advertising accounted for 30 per cent of FT Group revenues, down from 52 per cent in 2000.
Pearson revealed that advertising revenues for FT Publishing have continued to grow in the early part of the year and that as a result of ‘revenue diversification and cost actions’further profit growth at FT Publishing is expected this year.
Pearson notes that the FT’s print circulation was up 2 per cent in the last six months of 2007 to 440,0000 and that paying subscribers for FT.com have increased by 13 per cent to 101,000. It revealed that the FT has 5.7 million unique users for its site – which is said to be an increase of 30 per cent.
The Economist – which FT Publishing has a 50 per cent stake in – had global circulation up 9 per cent to 1.3 million in the last six months of 2007.
Chief exectutive Marjorie Scardino said it was an ‘excellent performance in every part of Pearson.”
She said: ‘We continue to reshape Pearson into a more digital, more international and more efficient company, and those changes make us confident that 2008 will be another good year.”
Pearson revealed that it has topped up the UK Group pension plan to the tune of £100 million in 2007 following ‘actuarial variation”.