Nov 23, 2020

DMGT: Mail drop

Events and exhibitions, a £119m revenue business last year, have given way to webinars and other online versions that entail less travel, less networking and less spending. Having already flagged ballpark numbers, the media group reported revenues of £1.2bn in the year to the end of September, down by a tenth, and pre-tax profit slashed by a third to £72m. But the newspaper proprietor is struggling to share a read-through for the current year: divisions are variously expected to face volatility, challenges or simply to "Lack visibility". Its record of 30 years and counting of progressive dividend policy remains unbroken with a final payout of £37.7m, or 16.6p a share. One-tenth of revenues will be funnelled into operating expenditure this year, in line with its projected minimum levels of 5 per cent a year. In its favour, the group's conference business is more about trade exhibitions for heavy industry - much harder to migrate online - and two big shows are scheduled for this fiscal year.

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