Centaur sees 24% revenue dip, sacrifices 19 staff

Centaur Media, the publisher of trade magazines including Marketing Week and the Lawyer, has reported a 24% decline in revenues in the second half of 2009 but has
moved to boost its dividend as trading conditions improve. The trade magazine publisher reported group revenues of £23.9m for the six-month period, partly reflecting a 50% year-on-year reduction in recruitment ad income, and a loss before tax of £1.7m.
However, the company said that it had seen an encouraging "steady moderation" in the rate of decline of revenues across the period with a 15% year-on-year fall in November and December compared to a 28% fall between July and October.
Excluding the recruitment sector all other ad revenues were down 22% year on year. Web-based advertising fared better with just a 6% year-on-year fall for the period. Year on year the company said that recruitment advertising fell from £5.2m to £2.6m; other advertising dropped from £13.1m to £10.3m; circulation revenue slipped from £2.7m to £2.5m; and online subscriptions dropped from £3.5m to £3.3m.
Costs were reduced by £5.7m during the period. Measures included reducing head count by 3%, or 19 staff, from 634 as at 30 June.

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