Nearly a third of media companies have an increased sense of confidence about the state of the economy throughout the rest of the year, according to the results of a survey published today.

Nearly 30 per cent of technology, media and telecoms businesses surveyed by accountancy firm BDO Stoy Hayward said they were ‘slightly or more confident’ about economic prospects facing the sector over the next three months.

In addition, 38 per cent said they were ‘as confident’ as in the previous three months of the year. The remaining, 32 per cent, were ‘slightly less confident’ or ‘much less confident.’

Those surveyed said that in addition to reducing staff number they were introducing measures in order to survive the recession that included renegotiating with suppliers, reducing research and development, merging or acquiring competitors, closure of non-productive business segments and outsourcing core functions.

These findings have been supported, in part, by recent financial reporting from some large media businesses.

Although operating profits took a 32 per cent fall year on year when Trinity Mirror reported its half year results, the company said marginal improvements were visible as the year progressed, with notable improvements in July’s figures, and it expected this to continue for the remainder of the year.

New distributor John Menzies said today that it was hopeful for the next six months, despite reporting a fall in profits of more than a third in the first half of the year, as long-term banking facilities were in place beyond 2011, it had taken-over contacts and assest of a rival company and reduced its debt by £30m.

Just over 42 per cent of respondents said their biggest risk factor was projects being deferred, while 30 per cent said the biggest worry was falling customer demand.

Julian Frost, head of technology, media and telecoms at BDO Stoy Hayward, said: “[C]ompanies in this sector have worked hard to introduce a number of cost cutting measures in order to reduce overheads across the full range of business functions.

“Although confidence levels have declined, the fall has been less severe than might have been expected and companies now appear to be looking to the medium and long-term future with a reasonable degree of optimism.”

The survey polled around 100 companies across the UK with revenues ranging from £10m to £5bn.

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