UK Guardian Group’s digital revenues surpass print

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The British newspaper group that owns The Guardian said Tuesday that its digital revenues had outstripped print for the first time.

Guardian Media Group, which owns the daily and its Sunday sister paper The Observer, said the change was fuelled by online readers increasingly making voluntary financial contributions.

GMG said its digital revenues, which include reader contributions and online advertising income, hit £108.6 million ($142.7 million, 121.9 million euros) in the last financial year.

Its income from printed newspapers and its events business brought in £107.5 million.

The group said it had 570,000 members who gave regular financial support online, while its income was boosted by 375,000 one-off contributions from readers in the past 12 months.

The Guardian has a print circulation of 140,000, the 12th-biggest among Britain’s daily newspapers. The Sun has the biggest circulation at 1.5 million.

GMG chief executive David Pemsel said the company’s focus was on The Guardian’s 10 million regular online readers.

The company has made savings over the past financial year through voluntary redundancies and switching the print edition from a Berliner to a tabloid format.

“When you were losing the sort of money we were losing historically, combined with the challenges in the advertising market, and structural decline in readership, that legitimizes trying to make sure the headcount is at the right level,” said Pemsel.

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