Andrew Neil: Digital 'wrong turns' behind Spectator's £500,000 loss for 2012

Political magazine The Spectator made an operating loss of £500,000 in 2012, according to its chairman.

In a statement to coincide with the magazine filing its financial result with Companies House, Andrew Neil admitted the year had been “disappointing” but said things were improving. He blamed the loss on one-off digital costs.

Neil added that the company had made a profit of £400,000 already in the first six months of the current financial year.

“The Spectator had a disappointing 2012 financially with an operating loss of just over £500,000 before exceptionals,” he said. “This reflected substantial digital development costs, which do not need to be repeated, and some digital wrong turns, which were expensive to rectify, but have been. 

“A new management team is in place which has corrected past mistakes and is already producing strong results in print and digital, so much so that operating profits for the first half of 2013 are already £400,000, which amounts to a substantial and encouraging turnaround.”

Last year, The Spectator revealed that its digital subscriptions accounted for 10 per cent of total sales.

The Spectator’s most recent audited ABC figures show it had an average circulation of 63,613 in the six months to the end of 2012, compared with an average of 63,543 for the same period in 2011.

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