Daily Mail and General Trust is looking to make £20 million year-on-year savings at its regional arm Northcliffe after releasing a trading statement today that said its regional newspaper arm faces “tough trading conditions” and slumping advertising revenue.
In its first trading update since abandoning the sale of Northcliffe, DGMT said that in the five months to February, advertising revenues in its regional newspaper group were 7 per cent lower than during the same period last year.
Property advertising revenue was up 6 per cent, but recruitment ads slumped 16 per cent and motor advertising fell by 14 per cent.
Digital publishing revenues, however, were up 17 per cent on the period for last year.
Northcliffe’s evening and morning titles outperformed the regional newspaper industry standard for circulation in the six month period.
DMGT said its future plans for Northcliffe would be made “soon” after the trading statement. There has been speculation that up to 1,600 jobs could be cut and that the Press & Journal in Aberdeen may be sold.
Northcliffe was put up for sale by DMGT in November but last month the company later said it was to hold on to the division as bids for it had been too low.