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February 13, 2018

FT says digital subscriptions now make up three-quarters of its paying audience

By Freddy Mayhew

The FT has said it is now a “majority digital content business” with digital subscriptions making up more than three-quarters of its paying audience.

The paper, which celebrates its 130th anniversary this month, said it had achieved a “record high paid-for readership” in 2017.

It claims to have more than 910,000 paying readers across print and digital, up 8 per cent year-on-year, with digital subscriptions up 10 per cent to 714,000.

FT chief executive, John Ridding, said: “Despite the constant disruption in the media ecosystem, the Financial Times has had another strong year.

“The demand for our quality, independent journalism has never been greater and this business performance underlines the dynamism of our global business and brand.”

The FT said content revenues reached almost two-thirds of total revenues in the year, which is “double the share of five years ago”.

It said it had seen “a strong year for the advertising business” with 64 per cent growth in branded content revenue year-on-year.

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The FT has said it will not be releasing profit and loss figures.

The FT added specialist thought leadership and research provider Longitude to its portfolio after acquiring a majority stake earlier this month.

Privately-owned Japanese company Nikkei bought the FT in November 2015 for £844m.

Picture: Reuters/Shannon Stapleton

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