Growth across the board for The Times and The Sunday Times
- Times Newspapers Ltd posts operating profit of £1.7m for year ended 30 June 2014, its first since 2001
- Total membership across both titles over 390,000 – up 10% year-on-year
- The Times posts total paid sales growth for 11th consecutive month
The award-winning journalism of The Times and The Sunday Times has delivered a profit for the first time in 13 years it was announced today.
Times Newspapers Ltd (TNL), which owns both newspapers, has posted an operating profit of £1.7million for the latest financial year ended 30 June 2014.
In the previous financial year TNL recorded a loss of nearly £6 million and five years ago, in the year prior to the launch of paid digital membership, the annual losses amounted to more than £70 million.
Both newspapers have increased their share of print sales and secured a healthy growth in membership. Members are now paying £6 a week for seven-day print or digital membership packages. At launch, digital members paid just £2 per week.
The latest figures for October show total paid sales for The Times up year-on-year at 545,000 and The Sunday Times at 958,000.
Membership accounted for 291,000 (54%) and 338,000 (35%) of total paid sales respectively and the growth in membership has enabled the papers to meet the challenges of a difficult advertising market.
Across both titles there has been a 10% growth in membership to 390,000, as at end October, comprising 170,000 members taking digital only product, up 12% year-on-year, and 220,000 members taking a combined print and digital product, up 9% year-on-year. This growth has been achieved whilst moving premium digital members to price parity with print membership.
Growth in total paid sales has also left both titles less dependent on advertising and consequently made revenues less volatile. For the 2014 financial year total paid sales represented 51% of TNL revenue compared with 44% coming from advertising.
The figures confirm that the “paid-for” strategy, pursued by News UK, is working well and is helping to secure a sustainable future for the news, sport, analysis and comment of the papers.