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  1. Publishers
August 11, 2022updated 17 Nov 2023 2:44pm

The UK’s biggest media companies revealed: Top 50 ranking

By Aisha Majid

A run down of the UK’s biggest media companies shows that news publishers are facing stiff competition from new, non-traditional entrants in the news and information space.

As is the case globally, the business of reporting on the world, once largely the purvey of dedicated news publishers, is now open to more players.

While they do not feature on our list of UK companies, US tech giants Google and Facebook which topped our 2021 global ranking of media companies are two of the biggest threats to news businesses. In 2021, search advertising which is dominated by Google was worth £11.7bn in the UK. Online advertising in newsbrands and magazines in contrast was worth a fraction of that at £918m.

Google’s holding company Alphabet (which made $257bn worldwide in 2021) earned £10.8bn in the UK last year, per one estimate – more than any UK company on our list. Facebook meanwhile made an estimated £5.3bn in the UK (and $118bn globally). The two companies’ collective global earnings are bigger than the combined revenue of all companies on our list.

But it’s not just the tech giants that have entered the news space. UK publishers face stiff competition from specialist analytics and data firms.

Topping our table is information and analytics giant RELX, formerly known as Reed Elsevier. The London-based business founded in the early 1990s specialises in scientific, technical, legal and medical information. Informa (ranked sixth), Euromoney Institutional Investor (ranked 15th) and Euromonitor (ranked 28th ) meanwhile are three other British information powerhouses that compete with B2B publishers in various verticals such as finance, healthcare, pharmaceuticals and aviation.

Informa’s acquisition of US B2B journalism company Industry Dive in July is likely to only strengthen its competitiveness.

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Legacy news names hold their own

While our ranking, which focuses on companies either established or headquartered in the UK, reveals that the news and media landscape is fast-evolving, some British legacy names are still holding their own.

Best-ranked among the traditional news names is the BBC which is in second place on our list. While the public broadcaster is more than just a news service with a wealth of entertainment programming, it is a news and factual information provider at its heart. 

Like the BBC, many of the biggest British media companies are multi-channel broadcasters.

Sky, set up by Rupert Murdoch in 1984 and currently owned by US telecommunications behemoth Comcast, is ranked third. Its UK operation Sky UK reported revenues of £3.2bn last year.

ITV, which holds 13 of the 15 regional television licences in the UK, comes in fourth, while public service broadcaster Channel 4 ranks ninth.

Also ranking in the top ten are three stalwarts of the UK print news industry: DMGT, ranked seventh, News UK ranked eighth and Reach in tenth. 

Reach, the UK’s biggest regional news publisher, made £146.1m in profits in 2021 while its network of sites together generated some 1.2bn page views this July according to Ipsos iris. The Mirror and Express publisher’s disappointing half-year 2022 results in which it revealed a sharp drop in profits will however come as a warning that sustaining a news business through advertising today is fraught with difficulty.

DMGT, publisher of titles including the Daily Mail, Metro and i, owns one of the largest news websites in the world in Mail Online but turning a profit has not been easy.

The two News UK subsidiaries that publish The Sun and The Times meanwhile have had contrasting financial fortunes. Although News Group Newspapers, which publishes The Sun, has yet to return to operating profit,  Times Newspapers Ltd, which relies primarily on subscriptions, reported its highest operating profit since 1990 last year.

The UK 50: Britain’s biggest news media companies

Read on to see our full list of the top 50 news media companies in the UK (with an at-a-glance table at the end). Note: If you think there are any companies that should be on this list, or if you would like to suggest any other improvements, please email aisha.majid@ns-mediagroup.com.

1. RELX

Top news/information brands: LexisNexis, ScienceDirect, Estates Gazette

Total revenues: £7.2bn

News/information/media revenues: £7.2bn

Source: Full-year 2021 results

Formerly known as Reed Elsevier, RELX has transformed itself into a leading player in information and analytics with a well-known stable of legal and scientific brands. Its publishing division Reed Business Information sold the New Scientist in 2017 and sold Farmers Weekly to Mark Allen Group in 2020.

2. BBC

Top news/information brands: BBC News, BBC Studios, regional channels across the UK, various other big name shows

Total revenues: £5.1bn

News/information/media revenues: £5.1bn

Source: Full-year results to April 2022

The BBC is one of the best-known names in the UK as well as the country’s biggest news provider, reaching almost 80% of people aged over 15. The majority of the publicly-owned broadcaster’s income comes from the licence fee paid by the British public although Culture Secretary Nadine Dorris has spoken in recent months about wanting to reform or scrap it.

3. ITV

Top news/information brands: ITV, Good Morning Britain

Total revenues: £3.5bn

News/information/media revenues: £3.5bn

Source: Full-year results for 2021

ITV, Britain’s oldest commercial TV network, was launched more than 75 years ago as a competitor to the BBC. The company is best known for its entertainment programming, but it also has some of the most popular and trusted news brands in the UK. It owns a 40% stake in ITN, which makes ITV News and Channel 4 News.  The TV audience for ITV News is second only to that of the BBC for news.

ITV News presenter Mary Nightingale and BBC News’ Huw Edwards. Picture: ITV/BBC

4. Sky

Top news/information brands: Sky News, Sky Sports, Sky Atlantic

Total revenues: £17bn ($20.3bn)

News/information/media revenues: £3.2bn ($3.9bn)

Source: The full year 2021 results

Formed as British Sky Broadcasting in the 1990s by Rupert Murdoch, Sky has since transformed itself into one of the biggest players on the UK media scene. The broadcaster and telecommunications company is the UK’s largest pay-TV broadcaster and its free-to-air news channel Sky News is the UK’s most-watched commercial channel. Sky was bought by US media giant Comcast in 2018 after a high-profile bidding war with Fox.

Note: News/information/media revenues include revenues from advertising and content. 

5. News UK

Top news/information brands: The Sun, The Times, The Sunday Times, Talksport, Talkradio, TalkTV

Total revenues: £2bn ($2.4bn, News Corp global news media segment revenue)

News/information/media revenues: £2bn

Source: Full-year results to June 2022

Part of News Corp, one of the biggest media operations in the world, News UK has for decades been one of the major forces in UK media.

Since News Corp does not provide a  separate revenue figure for its UK business, the figure given here is the global revenue for its news media segment which also includes its Australian business, the New York Post and Storyful.

Based on accounts published on Companies House, Sun publisher News Group Newspapers turned over £318.6m in 2021 and reported a drop in profits as declining print sales have only been partly offset by its growing digital reach. Times and Sunday Times publisher Times Newspapers, which uses a subscription model, meanwhile recorded a record profit of £34m in 2021 and £327m in revenue.

Note: Revenue for News Corp’s news media segment consists primarily of News Corp Australia, News UK, New York Post, Wireless Group and Storyful.

Rupert Murdoch leads one of the biggest media companies in the UK

Rupert Murdoch. Picture: Reuters/Mike Segar

6. Bauer Media Group UK

Top news/information brands: Grazia, Empire, Cosmopolitan, Absolute Radio brands

Total revenues: £1.9bn (€2.2bn, parent company global revenue)

News/information/media revenues: £1.9bn

Source: Bauer results for 2020

Private German media conglomerate Bauer Media is one of the biggest media companies in the world. Its UK operation publishes many household magazine names such as Closer, Grazia and Bella and also owns and operates radio stations including the Absolute Radio Network.

Revenue for Bauer UK is not in the public domain, so we have quoted the global figure here. UK revenue, while significant, is of course lower than this, since the family-owned company also has large operations across the Europe, Australia and the US.

7. Informa

Top news/information brands: CRC Press, Informa Markets, Taylor & Francis

Total revenues: £1.8bn

News/information/media revenues: £1.8bn

Source: Full-year results for 2021

Like RELX, Informa is another UK information powerhouse and has a large events, digital services and academic knowledge business. In July Informa confirmed the purchase of Industry Dive, a US business media company which publishes specialist newsletters  spanning 24 industries. But in August it sold Lloyd’s List, which may be the oldest B2B brand in the world.

8. Channel 4

Top news/information brands: Channel 4 News, Film 4, E4

Total revenues: £934m

News/information/media revenues: £934m

Source: Full-year results for 2021

Like ITV, Channel 4 is known for its entertainment programming which includes a large portfolio of TV comedies and dramas. The channel is however well-regarded for its news and factual programming which includes the ITN-produced Channel 4 News and investigative series Dispatches. Dorries has said she would like to privatise the channel, which is currently commercially funded and publicly owned.

9. DMGT

Top news/information brands: Daily Mail, Mail on Sunday, Mail Online, the i, Metro

Total revenues: £885m

News/information/media revenues: £885m

Source: Full-year results to September 2021

DMGT, founded in 1896, was taken private after being acquired by the founder’s great-grandson Lord Rothermere last year. The company is best-known for its consumer brands like Daily Mail and sister website Mail Online. But unlike many other large newspaper companies in the UK, DMGT also has a large B2B business and holds investments in a diverse range of other businesses. After building up its publishing portfolio through several acquisitions in recent years,  the company slimmed down in 2021 disposing of its Insurance Risk and EdTech businesses.

Lord Rothermere leads one of the biggest media companies in the UK

Lord Rothermere

10. Reach

Top news/information brands: Daily Mirror, Daily Star, Manchester Evening News

Total revenues: £615.8mn

News/information/media revenues: £615.8mn

Source: Full-year results for 2021

Reach, the UK’s largest commercial publisher by number of titles, owns some 130 print and digital brands including some of the UK’s best-known newspapers such as the Mirror, the Daily Star and the Daily Express. It is also the UK’s largest regional publisher and is responsible for titles including Manchester Evening News, Liverpool Echo and a network of regional sites under the Live brand. Reach’s 2021 revenue growth and profitability was reversed in its first half results for 2022.

Jim Mullen leads one of the biggest media companies in the UK

Reach chief executive Jim Mullen. Picture: Reach

11. Future

Top news/information brands: Tom’s Guide, Go Compare, Marie Claire, Homes and Gardens

Total revenues: £606.8m

News/information/media revenues: £606.8m

Source: Full-year results to September 2021

Magazine publisher Future has grown through a series of acquisitions to become one of the UK’s biggest specialist media companies. Future’s titles include special interest brands such as Tom’s Guide, Tech Radar and Homes and Gardens. Last year the company bought the owner of comparison website Go Compare, Goco and publisher of The Week, Dennis.

12. Auto Trader Group

Top news/information brands: Autotrader, Autotrader.com

Total revenues: £432.7m

News/information/media revenues: £432.7m

Source: Full-year results to December 2022

The well-known car classifieds magazine was set up in the 1970s after its founder brought the idea over from the US. Since then Auto Trader Group has transformed itself into a successful digital marketplace for the auto sector. The site also publishes car reviews and buying advice.

13. Economist Group

Top news/information brands: The Economist, 1843, Economist Intelligence Unit

Total revenues: £346m

News/information/media revenues: £346m

Source: Full-year results to March 2022 

Current affairs, politics and business magazine The Economist and its associated digital offerings are the Economist Group’s flagship products. The company is currently focusing on its events and its digital businesses which have boosted profits and revenue.

14. Moneysupermarket.com Group

Top news/information brands: Moneysupermarket.com, Travel Supermarket, Money Saving Expert

Total revenues: £344.9m

News/information/media revenues: £344.9m

Source: Full-year results for 2021

Having started life in the 1980s as a mortgage subscription business, with the advent of the web the company has since evolved into a personal loan and credit card price comparison site. In 2012 the company acquired financial journalist Martin Lewis’ consumer finance site Moneysupermarket.

15. Euromoney Institutional Investor

Top news/information brands: Euromoney, Institutional Investor, Fastmarkets brands

Total revenues: £336.1m

News/information/media revenues: £336.1m

Source: Full-year results to September 2021

B2B business and financial information publisher and events company Euromoney Institutional Investor was until 2019 49% owned by DMGT. The company recently agreed to a £1.61bn takeover by a private equity consortium which will take the company private.

16. Financial Times

Top news/information brands: Financial Times, ft.com, Sifted.eu

Total revenues: £319.8m

News/information/media revenues: £319.8m

Source: Full-year results to December 2020

Owned by private Japanese company, Nikkei, the FT’s UK registered company Financial Times Ltd reported a pre-tax loss of £34.5m for 2020, and a fall in revenue of 7%, which the company said was down to Covid-19’s hit to business.

The UK accounts do not, however, show consolidated earnings for the global business as the FT says it generates a large proportion of its revenue overseas. The Financial Times topped one million digital subscribers earlier this year suggesting that the business seems to be emerging from a challenging pandemic period.

The Financial Times was bought by Japan’s Nikkei in 2015. Photo credit: Reuters/Shannon Stapleton

17. Global

Top news/information brands: LBC, Capital, Heart, Classic FM

Total revenues: £434.1m

News/information/media revenues: £314.1m

Source: Full-year results to March 2021

A series of acquisitions over the years that have brought stations including Capital, Heart, LBC and Classic FM into its portfolio have helped make Global Europe’s largest commercial radio company. Earlier this year the company brought on board two of the BBC’s biggest names in news, Emily Maitlis and Jon Sopel, in a reported big money deal. Owner Ashley Tabor-King is one of the UK’s wealthiest businessmen. As well as commercial radio Global also operates an outdoor advertising business.

18. Rightmove

Top news/information brands: Rightmove.com

Total revenues: £304.9mn

News/information/media revenues: £304.9m

Source: Full-year results to December 2022

The company operates rightmove.co.uk, the UK’s biggest online property portal. The company generates income by listing estate agents on its website and charging for advertising.

19. ZPG

Top news/information brands: Zoopla, Money.co.uk, Uswitch

Total revenues: £285.9m

News/information/media revenues: £285.9m

Source: Full-year results to September 2020

Zoopla owner ZPG is part real estate company and part online publisher. In 2009, Zoopla acquired property website Thinkproperty.com from the Guardian Media Group and PropertyFinder website from News International.

20. Guardian Media Group

Top news/information brands: The Guardian, The Observer, theguardian.com

Total revenues: £255.8m

News/information/media revenues: £255.8m

Source: Full-year results to April 2022

The Guardian, the group’s flagship brand, crossed the one million digital subscriber threshold in November last year. Guardian Media Group recently announced a year-on-year revenue increase of 13%, taking the company’s turnover to the highest level since 2007/8.

Founded in 1821 as the Manchester Guardian, the Guardian Media Group has become increasingly international. Over half of the Guardian’s recurring digital supporters are based outside the UK, and the brand has an especially strong presence in Australia, Europe and the US.

Guardian deputy editor Owen Gibson picks up News Provider of the Year at the British Journalism Awards 2021 from Jeremy Vine and Glide publishing platform

21. Telegraph Media Group

Top news/information brands: The Daily Telegraph, The Sunday Telegraph,telegraph.co.uk

Total revenues: £245m

News/information/media revenues: £245m

Source: Full-year results for 2021

Owned by billionaire brothers David and Frederick Barclay (until David’s death in 2021), Telegraph Media Group (which reports to Companies House under the company name Press Acquisitions Limited) publishes two of the UK’s best-known upmarket papers, the Daily Telegraph and the Sunday Telegraph. The group is currently focused on its digital strategy and as of June this year had 739,926 subscriptions – of which 578,059 were digital.

Telegraph CEO Nick Hugh in the newsroom

Telegraph chief executive officer Nick Hugh. Picture: Telegraph

22. Ascential

Top news/information brands: Retail Week, WARC

Total revenues: £349.3m

News/information/media revenues: £244.5m

Source: Full-year results for 2021

Formerly known as Emap and Top Right Group, business publisher and events company Ascential is a large player in events and information. In 2017 Ascential sold off its heritage business titles including Nursing Times, Drapers and Architects’ Journal.

News/information/media revenues include revenue for digital subscriptions and platforms. 

23. Acuris

Top news/information brands: Merger Market, Debtwire

Total revenues: £231.6m ($277.2m)

News/information/media revenues: £231.6m ($277.2m)

Source: Full-year results for 2021

B2B financial news and data company Acuris specialises in information and news focused on financial products, compliance and mergers and acquisitions. It was previously known as Merger Market and was at the time owned by the Financial Times Group which sold the company to a private equity firm in 2013.

​​24. Immediate Media Company

Top news/information brands: BBC Good Food magazine, Match of the Day magazine, Radio Times, Top Gear magazine

Total revenues: £197.8m

News/information/media revenues: £197.8m

Source: Full-year results for 2020

Ultimately owned by German media giant Hubert Burda, Immediate is best known for its magazine and special interest brands.

25. GlobalData

Top news/information brands:  GlobalData sells proprietary data across a range of vertical industries including pharmaceuticals, technology and financial services. Its main business is selling access to its intelligence centre news and information products.

Total revenues: £189.3m

News/information/media revenues: £189.3m

Source: Full-year results for 2021

26. YouGov

Top news/information brands: YouGov

Total revenues: £189.3m

News/information/media revenues: £189.3m

Source: Full-year results to July 2021

Market research and opinion polling company YouGov is probably best known for its political polls in the run-up to elections. The consumer intelligence company, which was co-founded by current chancellor Nadhim Zahawi in 2000, however covers many more beats from animal rights to media to football.

27. DC Thomson

Top news/information brands: Press and Journal, Beano, Stylist, Dundee Courier

Total revenues: £160.2m

News/information/media revenues: £160.2m

Source: Full-year results to March 2021

DC Thomson publishes a number of Scottish newspapers and websites including Press and Journal, The Dundee Courier and The Sunday Post. It is also the publisher of longstanding comic The Beano and owns genealogy website Find My Past. Last year’s revenue was the lowest revenue since 2003 as the pandemic hit advertising and events however, careful investments and cost-cutting measures meant that pre-tax profits were the highest ever.

28. Euromonitor International

Top news/information brands: Passport, Via

Total revenues: £148.1m

News/information/media revenues: £148.1m

Source: Full-year results to March 2021

Euromonitor is one of the world’s best-known market research firms with a global presence. It operates market research database Passport and e-commerce intelligence platform Via. Customers can purchase reports on industries and geographies of interest to them.

29. Haymarket Media Group

Top news/information brands: 70 brands including What Car?, Campaign, Asian Investor

Total revenues: £147.7m

News/information/media revenues: £147.7m

Source: Full-year results to June 2021

B2B publisher, data and events company Haymarket works in many verticals including healthcare, finance, automotive as well as content marketing. After a difficult 2020, the company’s finances bounced back in 2021 with Haymarket reporting that revenue was up, especially in the US, where it has a particularly strong foothold in medical information.

What Car? magazine

30. STV Group

Top news/information brands: STV Central, STV North, Ginger Productions

Total revenues: £144.5m

News/information/media revenues: £144.5m

Source: Full-year results to December 2021

STV started as a broadcaster before also expanding into newspapers, advertising and radio. Today the Scottish media company provides TV broadcasts, video-on-demand and television production.

31. Newsquest

Top news/information brands: Northern Echo, Lancashire Telegraph,

Total revenues: £142m

News/information/media revenues: £142m

Source: Full-year results to December 2021

Newsquest, owned by US publishing giant Gannett, is the second-biggest regional publisher in the UK after Reach. In March, Newsquest bought the country’s fourth biggest regional publisher Archant leading the government to consider intervening over the competition fears. Dorries has since said she will not block the sale which has brought Archant titles such as the Eastern Daily Press, Norwich Evening News and Country Life into the Newsquest stable.

32. Independent Television News

Top news/information brands: ITV News, Channel 4 News, Channel 5 News

Total revenues: £126.1m

News/information/media revenues: £126.1m

Source: Full-year results for 2021

ITN makes news programmes for many of the UK’s major television networks and also operates ITN Productions, which creates content including films, documentaries, sports broadcasts and archive footage. The company also produces Channel 5’s morning debate and chat show Jeremy Vine.

33. Hearst UK

Top news/information brands: Good Housekeeping, Cosmopolitan, Men’s Health, Women’s Health, Elle, Esquire, Country Living

Total revenues: £115.9m

News/information/media revenues: £115.9m

Source: Full-year results for 2020

Hearst UK’s parent company, the US-based National Magazine Company, reported pre-tax losses of over £13m in its last filing as well as a large drop in revenue. According to the filing the company plans to increase its focus on digital advertising, subscription, video production and affiliate marketing to offset the decline in print advertising.

Hearst magazine offers

Men’s Health, Cosmopolitan, Elle and Good Housekeeping covers for December 2020

34. Claverley Group

Top news/information brands: Express & Star, Shropshire Star, weekly magazines and lifestyle titles

Total revenues: £91.8m

News/information/media revenues: £91.8m

Source: Full-year results for 2021

Claverley Group owns the Midlands News Association (MNA), which publishes two dailies and 16 weekly titles in the Black Country and bills itself as the UK’s largest independent news publisher. Claverley Group however has a much wider business that also covers digital media, business-to-business media and events management, which is reflected in the revenue figure given here.

35. PA Media Group

Top news/information brands: PA Media, Alamy

Total revenues: £90.1m

News/information/media revenues: £90.1m

Source: Full-year results for 2020

UK national news agency PA is owned by national and regional newspaper publishers including DMGT, Reach and Informa. PA Media Group owns stock photo agency, Alamy.

36. Which?

Top news/information brands: which.co.uk, various magazines such as Which? Computer, Which? Travel and Which? Money

Total revenues: £88.1m

News/information/media revenues: £88.1m

Source: Full-year results to June 2021

Consumer champion Which? is owned by charity and limited company The Consumers Association.  Its consumer protection advocacy and information work is funded through profits from commercial operations such as selling magazine subscriptions.

Note: News/information/media revenues include revenue for company Which Ltd which provides most of the content on which.co.uk.

37. National World

Top news/information brands: National World, The Scotsman, The Yorkshire Post and various city sites under the World brand

Total revenues: £86m

News/information/media revenues: £86m

Source: Full-year results for 2021

David Montgomery’s National World bought JPI, the UK’s third biggest regional publisher by number of titles, in 2021 for £10.2m. The company has since launched seven city websites under its own “World” brand and the national news website National World which is now the company’s biggest site having overtaken The Scotsman.

David Montgomery

David Montgomery

38. Wilmington

Top news/information brands: Compliance Week, Health Service Journal, Wilmington Healthcare

Total revenues: £113m

News/information/media revenues: £56.8m

Source: Full-year results to June 2021

Wilmington provides information, data and training to companies and focuses on regulatory compliance. The company publishes the Health Service Journal, a news service which covers policy and management issues in NHS England.

Note: News/information/media revenues include revenue for the company’s information and data operations

39. LBG Media

Top news/information brands: Ladbible, Unilad, Sportbible

Total revenues: £54.5m

News/information/media revenues: £54.5m

Source: Full-year results for 2021

Manchester-based digital media and youth content publisher LBG Media reported a very successful 2021. Turnover for the group, which was floated on the London Stock Exchange in December last year, soared by 81% while pre-tax profit was almost double that of the previous year.

40. Mark Allen Group

Top news/information brands: HR, Print Week, The Optician, the British Journal of Nursing

Total revenues: £43.7m

News/information/media revenues: £43.7m

Source: Full-year results to March 2021

Mark Allen’s company is a stalwart of the B2B publishing landscape in the UK. The publisher’s more than 100 magazine and event brands cover industry verticals including aviation, health, technology, human resources and leisure. The company also runs an events business which hosts events under its own brand as well as on behalf of its B2B clients. At the end of 2019 MAG bought out the Farmers Weekly brand from Reed Business Information.

41. Independent Digital News and Media

Top news/information brands: The Independent

Total revenues: £41.1m

News/information/media revenues: £41.1m

Source: Full-year results to October 2021

Since going digital-only in 2016, the company has reported profits and growing revenue each year. Like the Guardian, ​​The Independent has in recent years been increasingly looking to international markets and has since launched editions overseas and in other languages including Spanish, Arabic, Urdu, Persian. Russian billionaire Evgeny Lebedev has a 41% stake in the company, while Saudi Sultan Muhammad Abuljadayel owns 30%. The Independent and Evening Standard (see separate entry below) were previously branded together as ESI Media.

42. Centaur Media

Top news/information brands: The Lawyer, Marketing Week, Design Week

Total revenues: £39.1m

News/information/media revenues: £39.1m

Source: Full-year results to December 2021

B2B publishing and information house Centaur has simplified its portfolio in recent years and now consists of two divisions – Xeim, home to its marketing brands, and The Lawyer. In 2019 the company sold off a number of its finance brands including Money Marketing to Metropolis Group and its engineering titles to the Mark Allen Group. It also planned to sell The Lawyer but later decided to retain the brand.

43. On the Market

Top news/information brands: Onthemarket.com

Total revenues: £30.4m

News/information/media revenues: £30.4m

Source: Full-year results to January 2022

On the Market was set up in 2015 by a consortium of estate agents including Knight Frank and Savill’s as a direct competitor to industry leaders Rightmove and Zoopla. A strong property market in the second half of 2021 helped the relative newcomer turn a profit and increase its revenue last year.

44. Evening Standard

Top news/information brands: The Evening Standard

Total revenues: £28.1m

News/information/media revenues: £28.1m

Source: Full-year results to October 2021

The Evening Standard became free to consumers in 2009 after being bought by Russian billionaire Evgeny Lebedev and his father ending a 180-year history of paid circulation. Today the Evening Standard relies primarily on advertising for its revenue. The paper posted a sharp decline in profit and turnover in its latest results due to the decline in print advertising and Covid’s impact on commuter circulation. The title is, however, investing more in digital and has tried out home deliveries to readers.

Evening Standard newspapers on the streets. Picture: Reuters

45. Merit Group

Top news/information brands: PoliticsHome, Dods Parliamentary Companion, The House, Civil Service World

Total revenues: £27.4m

News/information/media revenues: £27.4m

Source: Full-year results to 31 March 2022

Another data and intelligence company on the list, Merit Group covers political, regulatory, and business data. Its Dods division publishes well-known political titles including Politics Home and the annual Dods Parliamentary Companion. Merit’s Data & Technology division serves largely UK-based customers with industry intelligence and marketing data.

46. City Wire Financial Publications

Top news/information brands: Wealth Manager, New Model Adviser, Funds Insider

Total revenues: £25.8m

News/information/media revenues: £25.8m

Source: Full-year results to December 2020

Headquartered in London, City Wire is a global company that provides, news, analysis and data to professional investors. The company also creates events. Its brands include Wealth Manager magazine and website and New Model Adviser targeted at independent financial planners and advisers.

47. Time Out Group

Top news/information brands: Time Out, Time Out Market

Total revenues: £37.8m

News/information/media revenues: £25.6m

Source: Results for the 18 months to June 2021

Time Out started life in the 1960s with a London magazine. It has since grown to become a global media and entertainment company publishing websites, magazines and guidebooks, as well as hosting live events and marketplaces. Earlier this year, Time Out ended its London print edition after 54 years to focus on a digital-first model.

Note: News/information/media revenues include revenue for Time Out Media

Last Time Out

Final Time Out London covers. Pictures: Hackney Dave, Hassan Hajjaj, Kris Andrew Small and Lakwena via Time Out

48. Agribriefing

Top news/information brands: Various news, data and events brands focused on the food production industry

Total revenues: £24.7m

News/information/media revenues: £24.7m

Source: Full-year results for 2021

Since its establishment in 2012, Agribriefing, which delivers price reporting, news, analysis, events, data and market intelligence on the food sectors, has expanded rapidly with operations in several countries. In 2021 the company sold off its UK operation – transferring its farming titles including Farmers Guardian. The revenue reported here pre-dates the sale.

49. Hello Ltd

Top news/information brands: Hello!

Total revenues: £23.9m

News/information/media revenues: £23.9m

Source: Full-year results to December 2021

The UK version of the original Spanish magazine Hola! (the UK company is a subsidiary of its Spanish parent), Hello has long been a bastion for celebrity and royal news. Hello! Was the most popular magazine by digital circulation in 2021 according to ABC.

50. The Spectator

Top news/information brands: The Spectator

Total revenues: £20.3m

News/information/media revenues: £20.3m

Source: Full-year results for 2021

Another Frederick Barclay property (along with Telegraph Media Group) the Spectator is a weekly centre-right magazine on politics, culture, and current affairs which was edited by former prime minister Boris Johnson from 1999 to 2005. The Spectator also publishes an Australian edition, US edition and website. Despite the pandemic, The Spectator doubled its pre-tax profits in 2020 due to an increase in print and digital subscribers.

Picture: Pixabay/Gino Crescoli

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