The Financial Times saw a sharp increase in profits in 2014, driven by growth in subscription and digital revenues and a record high circulation.
The FT’s total circulation grew 10% year-on-year to nearly 720,000 across print and online. FT.com subscriptions grew 21% to almost 504,000, with digital now representing 70% of the FT’s total paying audience. Mobile is the fastest growing channel, driving almost half of total traffic.
Financial Times Group CEO John Ridding said: “Behind the strong commercial performance, we enhanced our product offering with reader-focused innovations such as the new FT Weekend app, First FT and author alerts. Importantly our audience is not just growing – people are spending more time with the FT and consuming more content. Overall engagement is up by double digits year on year”.
Circulation gains were underpinned by a resilient advertising performance, with the FT taking market share globally. This year, the FT pioneered a new advertising currency based on “exposed time” and sold by cost per hour (CPH). Powered by technology partner Chartbeat, it is available to clients in addition to traditional impression metrics. How To Spend It, the FT’s luxury lifestyle magazine, marked its 20th anniversary in 2014 and attracted record advertising revenues, bucking the trend in a challenging climate.
FT Live, the Financial Times’ events business, has lifted revenues year on year by extending successful franchises into new global territories, launching new events such as the FT Banking Summit and Camp Alphaville, and expanding its programming into culture and arts with a successful FT Weekend series.
The FT continues to grow its footprint in executive education, launching the FT | IE Corporate Learning Alliance, a joint venture with IE Business School which provides premium custom learning to business leaders around the globe. The partnership connects the academic excellence of prominent business schools with the FT’s award-winning journalism and insight into real world, real-time business challenges. The FT also launched a customisable API for corporate, government and education customers that allows easy integration of FT journalism into customers’ platforms.
The FT 125 is building a community of senior executives from global companies who meet regularly to tap into the FT’s intellectual capital and discuss the challenges facing the next generation of CEOs with a focus on digital disruption and globalisation. The FT 125 has more than 20 corporate members from a wide range of sectors.
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