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Daily Mail to raise cover price as surging ad revenue fails to offset print decline

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By John McCarthy | Media editor

January 28, 2016 | 3 min read

The Daily Mail has announced that will up its cover price from 60p to 65p, marking its first increase in over three years.

The Daily Mail and General Trust (DMGT), the group administrating the Daily Mail and Mail on Sunday, announced that circulation revenues were down four per cent year on year in the quarter leading to 31 December 2015.

During the same period print revenue had decreased by £7m to £41m marking a decline of almost 15 per cent.

On the digital front however, ad income was up by 27 per cent from £18m to £23m, with MailOnline digital advertising revenues reporting a huge 66 per cent increase in the US. Digital certainly shouldered some of the print slump.

The group’s disposals and acquisitions in the first quarter were a driving factor in the reported 1 per cent overall revenue growth from last year, generating £500m revenue in the first quarter. In November, the group disposed of its online discount business, Wowcher, and converted it to a newly formed business in which it owns a 30 per cent stake.

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This new company also acquired the UK and Ireland operations of LivingSocial with hopes of releasing the potential from combined operations and databases. Net proceeds from the disposal of Wowcher and the investment in the new company were £29 million.

Also in February, Daily Mail Australia is set to become a wholly owned MailOnline business after an agreement has been reached to acquire a 50 per cent stake in the Australian counterpart from Nine Entertainment Company.

The group’s European business and financial magazine Euromoney Institutional Investor reported £90m revenue generated, a 6 per cent decline from last year. The Mail claim the decline reflects the “challenging market conditions and revenue trends” and was consistent with their expectations for the European business publisher.

Among trading news, the Daily Mail recently announced its chief executive Martin Morgan’s retirement at the end of 2016.

Words by John McCarthy and Jessica Goodfellow

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