Future adopts B2B economic model

Future Publishing is now working more like a B2B publisher than a consumer one, according to chief executive Stevie Spring.

In Future’s annual report Spring said its strategy of operating only in ‘enthusiastic segments’with ‘attractive commercial partnership potential’and gearing up ad rates accordingly has helped the company focus on basics – playing a key part in the £7m annual operational savings.

Spring said: ‘These characteristics, together with our engaged and loyal readership, mean that the economics of Future are more comparable to those of a business to business publisher rather than those of a general business to consumer publisher. We are, arguably, a business to ‘professional consumer’ – or ‘prosumer’ – publisher.”

Future publishes specialist titles in areas which include gaming and cycling. Its customer publishing branch, which saw revenue increase by 59 per cent, has recently secured the licence to publish official magazines for both Nintendo and Sony in the US market.

Spring, who joined the company in July 2006 after six consecutive profit warnings, has made a string of changes over the past year, including the sale of Future’s French and Italian businesses and the closure or sale of more than 50 under-performing magazines.

Spring said: ‘The titles we have sold or closed since July 2006 have enabled us to better allocate our time, effort and financial resource on strengthening our position in our core sectors.”

End of year results for the 12 months to the end of September showed an operating profit of £12.1m compared with a loss of £34m in the previous year on turnover of £165.7m.

Future revealed that it has made changes to the pricing, distribution or design of every one of its 100 plus magazines since Spring joined in July 2006.

Spring earned a total of £505,000 in the year ending 30 September 2007. Her basic salary of £285,000 for the year starting 1 October 2006 saw a rise to £305,000 from 1 October 2007. As of September, 2007, she also owned shares worth around £300,000.

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