November 30, 2017 Last Updated 6:06 am

Daily Mail and General Trust plc reports full year results

‘Our B2B companies delivered robust revenues despite challenging markets’

LONDON, UK — November 30, 2017DMGT executes on its strategy and delivers resilient underlying performance

  • Group adjusted revenue up underlying# 1% to £1,660 million and adjusted operating profit down underlying 2% to £198 million
  • Adjusted earnings per share down 1%, dividend per share up 3% to 22.7 pence
  • Good progress made against DMGT’s three strategic priorities in 2017
  • New Group strategy and vision with Performance Improvement Programme established

As in previous years, the IFRS figures (“Statutory results”) have been adjusted* for exceptional items and the inclusion of discontinued operations (“Adjusted results”). Statutory profits were reduced by impairment charges and statutory earnings per share also benefited from the inclusion of the gain on the Euromoney transaction.

In December 2016, DMGT reduced its stake in Euromoney from c.67% to c.49%. To enable a like-for- like comparison, 2016 pro forma† results (“Pro Forma results”) have been presented as though DMGT owned a c.67% stake in Euromoney during the first quarter of the year and a c.49% stake during the remaining nine months, consistent with the actual holding during Full Year 2017. Except where stated otherwise, commentary throughout this report compares Full Year 2017 adjusted results with the Full Year 2016 pro forma results.

Full Year Financial Highlights:

  • DMGT statutory and pro forma† revenue up 3%, underlying# revenue up 1%; adjusted operating profit down underlying 2%o Consumer:encouragingperformancefromdmgmedia;revenueupunderlying1%,adjusted profit up underlying 10%, with MailOnline moving into operating profit during the final quartero B2B: revenue up underlying 2% and adjusted profit down underlying 15%, reflecting RMS(one) amortisation, planned investment at Xceligent and challenging trading at Genscape
  • Adjusted profit before tax* (PBT) of £226 million, up 4% on a pro forma† basis
  • Adjusted earnings per share* (EPS) of 55.6p, up 7% on a pro forma† basis; full year dividendincreased by 3% to 22.7p.
  • Impairment charges of £206 million taken against Genscape, Xceligent and SiteCompli
  • Statutory loss before tax of £(112) million, including impairment charges; statutory EPS of 97.8p, up 69%, including £509 million profit on Euromoney transaction

Progress against strategic priorities:

  • Improving operational execution: simplification of management structure has already led to faster decision making
  • Increased portfolio focus: reduction of stake in Euromoney from c.67% to c.49%; disposal of Hobsons’ Admissions and Solutions businesses and Elite Daily; disposal of EDR in progress
  • Enhancing financial flexibility: net debt reduced by £214 million to £464 million; net debt:EBITDA ratio of 1.4; comfortably within preferred range

Paul Zwillenberg, Chief Executive, commented:
“We are encouraged that DMGT has delivered a resilient underlying performance during the year and made good progress against our strategic priorities.dmg media produced another year of outperformance. The underlying profit growth was particularly encouraging as MailOnline continued to grow its revenue strongly, moving into operating profit during the final quarter, and launched new initiatives, including DailyMailTV in the US.

Our B2B companies delivered robust revenues despite challenging markets. RMS(one) Risk Modeler has been released, innovative data-driven products continue to be launched and Hobsons is now entirely focused on its student-success business. As a long-term investor, we continued to invest through the cycle, and this contributed to a decline in B2B profitability, notably within dmg information and RMS.

We have made good progress against our three key priorities of improving operational execution, increasing portfolio focus and enhancing financial flexibility. We have delayered management, reduced overheads, enhanced our talent and refocused each business’s priorities. We have sharpened our focus on our strongest products as a result of the Euromoney transaction, restructuring of Hobsons, the sale of Elite Daily and the planned disposal of EDR. Our financial flexibility has improved with net debt to EBITDA now at 1.4 times, the lowest level in over 20 years.

We have now completed the strategic review of the Group. We have defined a new strategic vision, ‘Intelligent Insights. Consumer Connections’, which will harness DMGT’s competitive advantages across B2B and Consumer Media to create value enhancing opportunities. We are also rolling out a company-wide Performance Improvement Programme and these two initiatives will underpin our progress and better position us for the future.

As we move into FY 2018, we proceed with confidence towards my vision for DMGT’s future. The Board is confident that the new strategy and strong balance sheet will, over the medium term, generate consistent earnings growth that will underpin DMGT’s long-standing commitment to deliver sustainable annual real dividend growth.”

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