In common with other print publishers News Corp is struggling to come to terms with precipitous advertising declines, forcing it to dig ever deeper for cost cutting measures while seeking to grow its digital real estate business as quickly as possible.
The disappointing numbers from its Dow Jones division, which publishes the Wall Street Journal, has forced News Corp to up the price of its subscriptions and cover charges in the US, UK and Australia while simultaneously laying off staff and finding other efficiencies.
With no light visible at the end of the tunnel, News Corp ‘assumes’ continued declines into 2018, the publisher has said it will eke out ‘aggressive’ further cost reductions to plug a yawning hole in its bottom line driven by an 8.2% decline in advertising revenue to $737m over the period.
In stark contrast revenues from News Corp’s digital real estate business surged to $251m, beating analysts’ expectations of a rise to $243.2m, contributing to a 6.6% fall in total revenue to $2.08bn versus initial estimates of $2.10bn.
Print advertising has been on a downward spiral for the past ten years with the sector expected to contract a further 13% in the US this year, according to calculations from media research firm Magna Intelligence.
In June the WSJ opted to slash its international print run in order to focus on digital subscriptions in Europe and Asia.