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Trinity Mirror announces 24% rise in profits following Local World purchase

Trinity Mirror has seen a 24% rise in pre-tax profit to £133.2 million following the acquisition of Local World.

Adjusted pre-tax profit for 2016 was up from £107.5m for the previous year. Trinity Mirror took control of Local World in October 2015 in a deal worth £220m, making it the UK’s largest regional news publisher.

The acquisition more than offset losses incurred by the group’s failed national daily, the New Day. The group said the print market remained “challenging”, with print advertising revenues fell by 17.9% for the year to 1 January, while total revenues from its papers dropped 10.7%.

Sales of the Daily Mirror were down 10.8% compared with a 5.1% fall for the UK tabloid market as a whole.

However, Simon Fox, the chief executive of Trinity Mirror, said the group had been seeing “real growth in digital advertising” and was “becoming more digitally focused”.

Digital now accounted for 25% of advertising revenue, compared with 7% in 2012.

“We’re on the way,” he said. “The results are strong, but there’s still lots to do, because the market is changing incredibly quickly.”

Shares in Trinity Mirror rose 0.6% in morning trading in London to 120p, but have fallen more than a fifth over the past 12 months.

The results prompted the NUJ to call for better terms for Trinity Mirror employees.

Co-ordinator Chris Morley said: “Clearly there is money in the coffers for serious investment in quality journalism. That means paying journalists better, not continuing to hack away at jobs and experience to the detriment of print titles and levelling up benefits for Local World colleagues.”

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