Net profit attributable to shareholders for the year 2010 was $294 million, which more than doubled last year’s profit of $138 million. Excluding the impact of property revaluation gain, net profit from normal business operations recorded a five-fold increase from $26 million in 2009 to $128 million in 2010. The increase was led by a significant growth in the newspaper publishing business. Revenue for the Group rose 19% to $881 million. Revenues from both display advertising and recruitment services increased significantly in line with the upturn of the local economy and with management’s efforts to drive revenue. Operating costs before depreciation and amortisation showed a moderate growth of 4% mainly due to market driven staff cost increase, partly offset by savings in newsprint, rental and advertising & promotion expenses. The SCMP Group declared a final dividend of HK4 cents per share, together with HK2 cents interim dividend paid, full year dividend will amount to HK6 cents per share.
“Our recovery in 2010 was the result of a combination of diligent efforts to rein in costs and seek new business opportunities, as well as a healthy sustained recovery in the advertising, IPO and recruitment markets,” said the Managing Director & CEO Ms. Kuok Hui Kwong.
Revenue from advertising and marketing services increased 25%, mainly due to a higher volume of display advertising in the newspaper segment, followed by notices advertisement, glossy magazines, customized publishing and special execution services.
Recruitment revenue increased 43%. Print revenue rebounded strongly with higher advertising volumes in both Classified Post and Jiu Jik. Online recruitment revenue also recorded significant growth in 2010.
Combined full year readership figures for 2010 for South China Morning Post, Sunday Morning Postand print and online editions showed a 3% increase to 388,000.
“The SCMP Group has made substantial progress in strengthening our financial performance, as well as paving the way for future growth with a more robust portfolio of products,” Ms Kuok said.
“Our efforts in 2010 were focused on building longer term revenue. Our aim is to continue to strengthen our brands, our print and digital products, our editorial content and our portfolio of services to deliver the best value for both our readers and our advertising clients.”
About The SCMP Group
SCMP Group Limited (HKSE: 583) is a leading newspaper and magazine publisher in Asia. Its flagship publication, South China Morning Post, is Hong Kong’s world renowned 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, insightful analysis and opinion, multimedia articles and interactive forums. Striving to maintain the highest standards among the world’s quality newspapers, the South China Morning Post receives constant international recognition. It received 60 awards in 2010 for excellence in editorial, marketing and technical capability. Other publication titles of the Group include the Sunday Morning Post, Classified Post, JiuJik, Fuel, and the Chinese editions of Cosmopolitan, CosmoGirl! and Harper’s Bazaar. For more information, please visit us at www.scmpgroup.com.