Euromoney: 'Trading may get worse before it gets better'

Financial publisher Euromoney has said it is weathering the recession well, but warned that the next six months would be ‘challenging and uncertain’.

The group, owned by the Daily Mail and General Trust, said it saw the economic downturn coming and took early action to cut costs.

As a result, revenue in the six months to the end of March was up four per cent year on year at £160.7m. Like-for-like operating profit in the same period rose three per cent to £37.1m.

The group said its profit margin had remained stable at 23 per cent – and parts of the business with lower margins had been “eliminated quickly”.

In its half-year results, published today, Euromoney reported a statutory operating loss of £3.2m, which it said was due to restructuring costs, including £3.1m in redundancy costs.

Subscription revenue increased by 35 per cent and now accounted for almost half of the group’s total income, up from a quarter five years ago.

But advertising revenue was said to be down 10 per cent and sponsorship fell by eight per cent. And Euromoney said blanket bans on corporate travel resulted in revenue from delegates attending events was down by 30 per cent in the first three months of 2009.

Chairman Padraic Fallon said: “We expected the downturn and cut costs early. Trading may get worse before it gets better, but we will be ready when the recovery begins.

“The strength of our brands, our robust cash flows and the diversity of our revenues will continue to help us through this difficult trading period.”

Unlike rival B2B publisher United Business Media, which has openly said it hopes to use the recession to buy companies, Euromoney said major acquisitions in the next 12 months were unlikely.

Euromoney shares were down 4.7 per cent in early trading and were changing hands at 242p at 8.20am.

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