Publisher Future sees profits at top end of expectations

Future eyes profit at the top end of expectations as The Week and Country Life publisher’s online audience grows

  • It said it returned to organic audience growth in the second half
  • Profits to come in towards the top end of expectations of between £269-£271m

The publisher behind The Week and Country Life has told investors it expects profit to come in at the top end of expectations as it continues to attract new readers. 

FTSE 250-listed Future said the ‘encouraging’ performance outlined in its June trading update has continued, with the group returning to organic audience growth in the second half.

Future shares rose 6 per cent to £18.27 in morning trading on Tuesday, but remain down by around 50 per cent compared to last year.

Upbeat: Future said audience growth has returned in the second half of the year

Chief executive Zillah Byng-Thorne said: ‘We are pleased to be reporting another period of good progress. 

‘Against the backdrop of a challenging macro environment, our continued strong performance is a testament to the diversified nature of valuable audiences, specialist content verticals and monetisation routes coupled with a relentless focus on execution.’

Future’s titles also include TechRadar and football magazine FourFourTwo, as well as US digital women’s lifestyle publisher Who What Wear, which it recently acquired.

The group now expects adjusted profit for the full year to the end of September to come in towards the top end of expectations of between £269million and £271million. 

This would be an increase of up to 38 per cent from last year’s adjusted profit of £196million. 

Future has been on a acquisition spree in the past couple of years.

It purchased GoCo Group, the owner of price comparison website Go Compare, for £594million in 2020, and Dennis Publishing, the owner of The Week and MoneyWeek, in August 2021 for £300million

It also bought Mozo, an Australian price comparison website that focuses on financial products like loans and bank accounts, for £17million.

And it snapped up TI Media – which publishes 40 titles including Horse & Hound, Woman & Home and Wallpaper – in a a £140million deal.