Regional publisher Northcliffe Media recorded a 9pc drop in overall revenues in the last three months of 2011, according to figures published today.
A quarterly financial statement by Northcliffe’s parent company DMGT revealed that circulation revenues fell by 7pc, with the decrease attributed to the decision to switch four of the group’s titles from daily to weekly publication.
Today’s interim management statement also revealed that the company’s headcount fell by 80 in the period October – December 2011, the first quarter of DMGT’s financial year.
The number of people employed at Northcliffe now stands at 2,450, compared to 3,130 in October 2010.
The statement said: “Northcliffe Media’s total revenues were down by 9pc to £53m, an underlying decline of 7pc.
“Circulation revenue fell by 7%, driven entirely by the move of four titles from daily to weekly frequency and the transfer to wholesale distribution last year. Circulation declines are being offset by cover price increases.
“Northcliffe’s cost base continues to be reduced with publishing costs 12pc lower than last year.
“Headcount has fallen by a further 3pc during the quarter with total headcount now at 2,450, compared with 2,530 in October 2011. Trading in January has seen underlying advertising revenues 10pc lower than last year.”
The statement also revealed that advertising revenues at the group were 10pc down year on year, with recruitment revenues down 13pc.
Commenting on DMGT’s performance as a whole, chief executive Martin Morgan said trading had been in line with expectations.
He said: “Our consumer media operations were resilient with increased national circulation revenues which, together with a strong digital performance, offset a decline in print advertising revenues.
“Whilst we acknowledge the continuing external uncertainties, particularly for UK advertising, the outlook for the year remains unchanged.”