Daily Mail & General Trust said today it was trading ahead of expectations helped by a significant increase to advertising revenue generated by its national newspaper business.
The company said underlying advertising revenue at Associated Newspapers - the division which publishes the Daily Mail and the Mail on Sunday - rose by 13 per cent year-on-year in the three months to the start of July.
Overall, DMGT's revenue for the third quarter was £508m, down two per cent on the same period last year, but up six per cent on an underlying basis.
Publishing an interim management statement this morning, DMGT said both the Daily Mail and The Mail on Sunday maintained their market share as display ad revenue rose 15 per cent year-on-year.
Revenue from classified ads dropped three per cent but this was offset by an increase of 46 per cent in the group's digital revenue, the company said.
Associated Newspapers' total revenues for the quarter fell by three per cent to £201m. Circulation revenues were 0.7 per cent up, DMGT said, due to the timing of Easter.
DMGT said it had seen growth in both its B2B and consumer media businesses and while focus was still on reducing costs it was meeting its debt reduction targets with a decrease in its debt of £38m over the three month period to £970m by 4 July.
The company's regional newspaper business, Northcliffe Media, saw total revenues for the quarter fall by four per cent to £66m, a similar percentage drop to the previous quarter.
Advertising revenue at Northcliffe was down four per cent year-on-year with retail and recruitment witnessing a revenue decline of six per cent.
Revenue from property ads increased by nine per cent year-on-year, digital revenue was up ten per cent, while circulation revenue fell by five per cent.
Overall, revenue from its consumer business brought DGMT £274m, a ten per cent drop on the corresponding period last year, but with an underlying increase of four per cent.
Revenues from DMGT's B2B operations in the quarter were £234m, eight per cent higher than for the corresponding period last year, nine per cent higher on an underlying basis.
The company said this reflected disposals within its DMG Information and DMG Events business which offset the impact of the value of the pound falling against the dollar.
The company said its B2B wing was expected to achieve continued growth in the year driven by solid subscription revenues and good cost control.
Oliver Luft writes for the Press Gazette