Record revenues for The Independent


The Independent delivers record revenues and fourth consecutive year of profit

London, United Kingdom – 22 February 2021  The Independent has reported its financial performance for the period ending 27 September 2020.

Financial highlights

  • Delivered record revenues of 30.3 million, a 12% YOY improvement
  • Fourth consecutive year of profit at £2.7m, up 18% from the previous period
  • 3.2-billion-page impressions generated in the year, through owned and operated channels
  • Record breaking 100 million unique visitors each month on average for the fiscal year
  • Advertising revenue up 14%, despite a challenging Covid-19 backdrop
  • 40% improvement in reader revenues on last year
  • Performance this year already up as growth in revenues continues
  • New editorial products launched including Independent TV and a Spanish-language edition
  • Even stronger results through first four months of current financial year (Oct-end Jan, unaudited accounts): revenue up 29% YOY and trading profit up 49% YOY

Operational update 

The Independent has delivered record revenues and profit in its latest financial results, driven by increased investment in its editorial teams in the UK and around the world.

Revenues exceeded £30m, up 12% year-on-year, while profits reached £2.7m, an increase of 18%, despite the challenges faced by the news publishing industry during the Covid pandemic. The results mark the fourth consecutive year of profit since The Independent became the first national newspaper in the UK to become purely digital.

Visitors to site were up 30% year-on-year with more than 100m unique readers every month, another milestone achievement. Tens of millions more users also consumed the group’s content through partnerships with Yahoo, MSN, Facebook, Apple News and Twitter.

Advertising revenues grew by 14% compared to single or double-digit falls for the majority of competitive news media companies as the pandemic struck. This was bolstered by a 40% improvement in reader revenues from subscriptions and significant strength in licensing and syndication with a range of partners.

This outstanding performance has been a launchpad for even more impressive results during the current financial year. Since October 2020, total revenues are up a further 29% year-on-year as the title has stepped up its international expansion and launched a range of new editorial products.

Video journalism – which was already delivering 95 million views on the site each month – has now been significantly expanded with the launch of Independent TV, producing high-end original video packages. These are presented by The Independent’s expert correspondents around the world, giving new depth to the site’s coverage.

The group has established Independent en Espanol, an edition for all Spanish-speaking markets, but particularly targeted to the Latin American markets of US, Mexico and their rising economies and influence, extending an even stronger base for continued growth into the future. A team has now been hired in India in preparation to launch The Independent’s first Asia edition, with further hiring due later this year.

The Independent will continue to further diversify its revenue streams with a focus on reader contributions as well as subscriptions and developing direct-to-consumer services such as IndyBest and eCommerce. It will enrich reader engagement by moving ‘Anonymous’ users to ‘Known’ customers under an ‘A2K’ strategy.

Licensing revenues are expected to grow through additional partnerships and translation services including Spanish, and a range of content distribution deals. The success of such initiatives will ensure The Independent is well-placed to continue investing in high quality journalism as well as expanding its commercial, data and technical capabilities.

John Paton, Chairman of Independent Digital News and Media, added: “The Independent has performed exceptionally well since its digital transformation in 2016, delivering high-quality and trusted journalism while expanding its offerings, audiences and global presence. These results firmly reinforce The Independent’s position as not just the largest quality digital news brand in the UK but also as a truly global quality news organisation.”  

Zach Leonard, CEO of Independent Digital News and Media, Ltd, added: “These results help demonstrate another significant step forward as we continue to invest in our high-quality journalism and data-driven products, reaching new audiences and new markets. We have clear and ambitious growth plans for FY20/21, focused on further diversification and expansion while continuing to improve and grow our existing high-quality products and services.”

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