Strong US dollar keeps Future's revenue up

Future, the British-based international magazine publisher, recorded a one per cent increase in revenue in the last quarter – due to the dollar’s strength against the pound.

The company – which publishes 180 magazines, including Total Film, Guitar World, and the Official Playstation Magazine – today published a trading update for the last three months of 2008.

They reveal revenue up one per cent year on year to £41m. Circulation revenue fell by two per cent, but advertising grew by one per cent.

Future said its total web traffic increased in December to 20 million unique users a month, compared to 18 million in September.

Online revenue increased 25 per cent, and now accounts for a quarter of the group’s total revenue.

However, if the dollar’s value had stayed constant, rather than increase by 23 per cent, overall revenue would have fallen by seven per cent.

The company said there were ‘tough conditions at the newsstand’and said it “continues to keep a tight control on costs”.

Future said it sold 4.3 million magazines per month in 2008, compared to four million in 2007.

In the UK, it sells 80 per cent of its magazines at the newsstand, and generates the majority of revenue through cover price.

In the US, just 29 per cent of magazines are sold at newsstand, with the majority of revenue through advertising.

Future, which was formed in Somerset in 1985 with the launch of Amstrad Action magazine, recently launched The Knitter and trialled Triathlon Plus.

Chief executive Stevie Spring said: ‘Our focus this year is on guiding our business effectively through the uncharted waters of the current macroeconomic environment and ensuring we remain on course to deliver sustainable growth in the mid-term.

‘While of course we’re not immune to current challenges, we’re mitigating these through the active management of our portfolio and through building in greater cost flexibility.”

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