As the publisher confirmed the closure of The New Day newspaper after nine weeks, it said “excellent progress” had been made on bringing together its new enlarged regional portfolio.
Trinity Mirror took control of Local World last November in a £220m deal that saw it buy out the 80pc of shares it did not already own, making it the UK’s largest regional newspaper group.
Today’s update states: “Excellent progress has been made on the sharing of best practice across the Group with a number of non system dependent changes having already been implemented.
“In addition to the relocating of all central operations previously located at Local World’s head office in the West End to the Group’s operations at Canary Wharf, we have standardised circulation sales, recruitment telesales, editorial and advertising management structures and have also centralised newsprint procurement.
“We are now into the final stages of planning the systems integration with implementation commencing in the second half of the year. Digital platform integration is being prioritised given the significant opportunities to grow audience, revenue and profits in a growing digital advertising sector.
“Following the Board’s decision not to sell the former Iliffe titles, we are confident that we will deliver at least £12 million of synergy savings in 2017.”
The update also confirmed tomorrow’s closure of The New Day, with sales reported to have bottomed out around 40,000 a day compared to a target of 200,000.
The company said: “Although The New Day has received many supportive reviews and built a strong following on Facebook, the circulation for the title is below our expectations.
“As a result, we have decided to close the title on 6 May 2016. Whilst disappointing, the launch and subsequent closure have provided new insights into enhancing our newspapers and a number of these opportunities will be considered over time.”
At the time of the paper’s launch in February, editor Alison Phillips confidently declared that people had not “fallen out of love with newspapers,” but that existing titles were not meeting their needs.
Today’s update also revealed an 8.6pc year-on-year revenue declined across the group in for the period January to April.
Print advertising revenues were down 19pc while circulation revenues were down 4.5pc, although digital revenues were up 15.7pc.
The company said: “We continue to see strong growth in digital audience with average monthly page views, excluding galleries, across the publishing sites growing by 22pc to 755 million on a like for like basis.”
Trinity Mirror’s AGM takes place at the Museum of London today.