Haymarket doubles profits after faster than expected recovery from pandemic

Media group generated half of annual turnover from US

Jan 17, 2022 10:18:00 AM | Article | Gideon Spanier

Haymarket Media Group doubled annual profits in the last financial year as the group bounced back from the pandemic faster than expected and generated half of its turnover from the US for the first time.
 
The owner of brands including Asian Investor, Campaign, Horticulture Week, MyCME and What Car? reported earnings before tax, interest, depreciation, amortisation and exceptional items (EBITDAE) of £16.5m in the 12 months to June 2021, compared with £8.3m a year earlier.
 
Turnover rose 3.4% to £147.7m, with digital bringing in about 65% of revenue, print 19% and live events, which were largely virtual, 16%.
 
Geographically, the US represented just over 50% of sales, the UK 41% and the rest of the world 9%. The US had a record year, with 90% of its sales coming from medical business.
 
Haymarket ended the financial year with £37.9m in net cash, up from £24.8m, according to the accounts, which have been filed at Companies House.
 
Kevin Costello, chief executive of Haymarket Media Group, said: “These results reflect a year of determination, exceptional hard work and motivation. We went into the new financial year (July 2020) having restructured the business, partly in response to the pandemic. And it paid off, putting us in a strong position to face the year ahead. We remained true to our core strategic goals and values, continuing to reinforce the balance sheet, ensuring we have the headroom to grow. 
 
“We responded quickly to the crisis in early 2020, while remaining focused on our core strategy. This has served as our north star.  A key part of which has been our ongoing obsession with the continued diversification of our revenues, resulting in our best performance ever in the US and a significant leap in profit.
 
“As a private company we can take a long-term view, without exposure to the volatility of the stock market. We have reinforced our cash position, enabling us to continue to invest organically and through acquisitions.”
 
Costello cited the launches of Performance Marketing World, Rare Disease Advisor and Opthamology Advisor and the acquisition of Rockcliffe Media in the past 18 months.
 
“The company will continue diversifying revenue streams across the markets it operates in, and actively look for new investment and acquisition opportunities in areas such as automotive technology, marketing communications and medical,” Haymarket said.
 
Lord Heseltine, founder and chairman of Haymarket Media Group, said: “These results demonstrate a business that is financially sound, setting us in good stead to focus on sustainable growth.
 
“Despite an uncertain trading environment, at Haymarket we find ourselves in a strong position and have moved from surviving to thriving. It’s a testament to the ingenuity of our people that we can report the healthy profit we have today and I have complete faith in them for our future successes.”
 
Revenue set to return to pre-pandemic levels
 
Haymarket expects revenue to be back to pre-pandemic levels in the current financial year ending June 2022, with live events revenue benefitting from the return of face-to-face events.
 
Digital is likely to be close to two-thirds of turnover, live events 21% and print 16%.
 
Costello said: “It’s all about growth. We have a solid foundation, underpinned by our remarkable content. This is what sets us apart. Specialist content that inspires, informs and empowers our clients, audiences and communities.
 
“We are proud of our heritage but more excited by what the future holds. We continue to invest and grow our business, while actively pursuing acquisition opportunities within our chosen markets.
 
“At the peak of the crisis, revenues had fallen by 40% in the UK, but we have recovered better than we could have imagined. We cannot ignore the current challenges for us including the spread of Omicron, holding live events across the media sector and the impact of the semiconductor crisis within the automotive sector.
 
“And while we face another year of ambiguity, since returning to the office under a blended working model last year, the power of in-person collaboration is clear and we don’t ever want to lose that,” he added, describing Haymarket as “a business of creatives who thrive through human interaction”.
 
Haymarket owns more than 70 brands – with 1,300 employees and offices across the UK, US, Hong Kong, Singapore, India and Germany.