Egmont UK Limited saw sales drop 16.7% to £41.6m due to “challenging market conditions in books” and a consolidation of its magazine portfolio.
For the year ending 31st December 2018, gross profit fell to £17.8m from £22.1m in the previous financial year, and losses before taxation were £267,000, compared to £211,000 in 2017. The company attributed the losses partly to the decrease in revenue but also blamed additional costs associated with investments in content marketing and office leasing expenses.
Egmont UK Limited publishes authors including Andy Stanton, Michael Morpurgo and Katherine Woodfine and is part of the Egmont group, a media group that describes itself as an entity that tells stories through books, magazines, film, TV, music, games and smartphones in 30 countries. It is owned by Egmont Fonden, a charitable trust based in Denmark.
The UK company is divided into two divisions - Egmont Books and Egmont Magazines - and sold 14.1 million books and 6.4 million magazines last year.
Competition in the UK book and magazine market is “fierce”, according to a statement posted on Companies House, even though there is still a strong demand for both. The magazines market has shown a decline in terms of volume but value remains “on par”.
In 2019 Egmont UK will push ahead with licensing projects in books and magazines and will aim to reduce costs by continuing with efficiency plans. The firm will also invest in consumer insight which will inform its publishing going forward
Egmont UK Limited’s results are listed on Companies House through Egmont Holding Limited, a holding company for Egmont UK Limited, foreign subsidiaries in the US and South Africa, and a joint venture with Hardie Grant Egmont in Australia.
Egmont Holding’s profit for the year after taxation was £31,000, compared to a loss of £224,000 in 20174, but this was due to profit from Hardie Grant Egmont of £88,000 and interest income from short term deposits of £165,000.