Despite revenue pressures brought on by covid19, Guardian Media Ltd reported a 13 per cent growth -- $3.3 million – in core advertising revenue, year-on-year, for the first three months of 2020.
This as the media organisation, a subsidiary of conglomerate Ansa McAl, reported a $1.3 million first quarter profit, up $6.6 million from a net loss of $5.4 million during the same period last year.
In its financial statement, published Tuesday, the company’s chairman, Peter Clarke, said GML benefited from prior year investments in improving sales and “elevating editorial content.”
The company recorded a $1.8 million non-recurring write-back of expenses accrual from the negotiation of a contracted licensed service.
But excluding this one-off event, the company’s year-on-year normal expenses declined 11 per cent or $3.2 million “due to efficiency improvements and a reduction of controllable expenses.”
The company said while its covid19 response is progressing well, it is difficult to assess and predict the broad effects of the disease on business and operations in the second quarter as the actual impact is dependent on factors beyond the company’s control, and the fluidity of the situation.
“We will continue to experience some further logistical and operational challenges Our greatest concern is with revenue losses in the second quarter from stay-at-home orders and the closure of non-essential businesses.” As a media entity, GML is classified as an essential business, and continues to operate, even as it has implemented work from home policies for a substantial number of its employees.
The first quarter income before tax for the print part of the company was $325,000, compared to a loss of $3.2 million last year, while multi-media made $1.5 million compared to a $3.5 million lost last year