Guardian group on track to break even by April 2019 as it cuts losses by two thirds in two years - Press Gazette

Guardian group on track to break even by April 2019 as it cuts losses by two thirds in two years

Guardian News and Media, publishers of the Guardian and Observer titles, has cut its losses by two thirds in two years as it says it remains on track to break even by April next year.

GNM said its operating losses for the year to the end of March 2018 were £19m, ahead of a £25m target, with revenue growth and costs savings helping to push it back towards the black.

The group said its total revenue for the year was up 1 per cent (£1.5m) on last year at £216m. Its overall costs for the year were £235m, down £17m on the year before.

GNM is two years into a three-year plan to turn its finances around, during which period it has reduced its operating losses by £38m overall, down from £57m in 2015/16.

Viner said in December last year that she expected the group to break even in 2018/19.

GNM has benefitted from its move to a tabloid format for both the Guardian and Observer titles in January this year, which was expected to save it several million pounds. Chief executive David Pemsel has said the move was an “important milestone” in its “transformation plan”.

Both newspapers are now printed by Trinity Mirror.

In a joint statement, Viner and Pemsel said: “We are well on track with our three-year strategy to make the Guardian sustainable and break even at operating level by 2018/19.

“Thanks to outstanding collaborative work in the UK, US and Australia, we have finished the second year well ahead of our forecast.”

They said Guardian US and Guardian Australia are both on “sound financial footing”, adding: “We enter year three with the goal to break even, but we still face challenges and uncertainties.

“This unpredictability makes sensible financial and business planning more critical than ever, and so we are already beginning to look beyond the coming year and plan how we invest for the long-term future.”

GNM is understood to have more than 800,000 paying supporters, including 200,000 print or digital subscribers, 300,000 members or regular contributors and about the same in one-off donations.

Supporters pay a minimum of £2. Subscriptions cost from £10.36 a month.

Guardian editor Kath Viner said in October last year that revenues from readers now exceed newsstand sales.

Picture: Guardian



Press Gazette's must-read weekly newsletter featuring interviews, data, insight and investigations.