Group revenue rose 8% from $946.1million in 2011 to $1019.6million in 2012, driven largely by new revenue sources, including the newly acquired Elle magazine and the contract printing opportunity, and higher revenue contribution from the Magazine publishing business.
Net profit attributable to shareholders declined by 20% from $409.9million to $329.1million, with profit and earnings from normal operations largely impacted by increased investment in new digital products, as well as the increase in costs associated with the new Elle acquisition and the new contract printing business.
The largest revenue source (76%) continues to be the newspaper publishing business, which remained steady at $773.6million compared to $779.2million in 2011. However, net profit declined by 19% to $97.5million in 2012 from $120.5million in 2011, again due to an increase in costs and investments.
The Magazine publishing business grew with the acquisition of Elle Magazine and its related products, and continued growth in the existing products Cosmopolitan, CosmoGirl! and Harper’s Bazaar. Net profit from the Magazine publishing business increased 23% from $30.3million to $37.3million.
Excluding fair value gains on investment properties of $170.7million and $237.7million for 2012 and 2011 respectively, net profit from normal operations decreased 8% from $172.2million to $158.4million in 2012.
Earnings per share for 2012 was 21.1cents, reflecting a 20% decrease from 26.3cents in 2011. Final dividend payable per share was 4.5 cents, increased 13% as compared to 4.0 cents in 2011.
Dr. David Pang, Chairman for SCMP Group, commented, “We’ve been operating in a changing media economy, which has been impacted by a reduction in IPOs, a quiet recruitment sector and lackluster property market as a result of recent market cooling regulations by the Government. All of these had an impact on traditionally important revenue sources for the South China Morning Post. However, we have been able to mitigate that impact by maintaining a solid overall newspaper publishing business and the realization of new revenue from our investment in Elle. During the year, we have also built a new contract printing business, a suite of enhanced digital products, a strengthened talent pool and continue to look out for valuable business to reinforce our capabilities in the publishing business. We believe our investments made in the past year will further strengthen our business in the years to come, and remain positive about our ability to deliver value and performance in line with the Hong Kong economy in the coming year.”
About SCMP Group Ltd and South China Morning Post
SCMP Group Limited (SEHK: 583) is a leading newspaper and magazine publisher in Asia. Its flagship publication, South China Morning Post, is Hong Kong’s internationally recognised English language newspaper and has the city’s most affluent and influential readership.
First published in 1903, the newspaper has developed an enviable reputation for authoritative, influential and independent reporting on Hong Kong, China and the rest of Asia. Available in print, iPad™ and online through scmp.com and e-reader editions, South China Morning Post reaches a global audience with daily breaking news, analysis and opinion, multimedia articles and interactive forums. The South China Morning Post received 64 awards in 2012 for excellence in editorial, marketing and technical capability. Other titles in the Group include the Sunday Morning Post, the Chinese editions of Cosmopolitan, Harper’s BAZAAR, ELLE and CosmoGirl! magazines.
For more information, please visit us at www.scmpgroup.com.
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