Updated: Which Papers In The UK Are Winning The Digital Revenue Race?

Online is a half-billion-pound business for UK newspapers, paidContent:UK has concluded, after researching key industry financial metrics. Here’s who comes out on top…

These figures are for the latest year for which numbers are widely available for fair comparison, 2009. Most were stated by publishers in company earnings or annual reports. Others (“*”), where publishers declined disclosure when asked, are obtained from industry sources and/or extrapolated from other metrics and indicators. This is the first time we have seen this key info compiled in one place.

The findings reveal a wide disparity in digital revenue pulled by various newspapers….

  • The Financial Times is far and away the most successful at digital, even without contributions from Interactive Data Corp, its online-heavy sister company in FT Group.
  • But DMGT’s consumer publisher A&N Media, when you combine its Associated national sites and its Northcliffe local newspaper sites, pushes the FT close for the lead, because its online-only former Associated Northcliffe Digital (AND) division makes so much from its property, car and job web classifieds.
  • The income of Britain’s most-read newspaper site, Mail Online, as the biggest online component of Associated, looks small, but A&N takes most of its digital income through AND.
  • Trinity Mirror’s national division, housing Mirror.co.uk and The Daily Record, underperforms its regional stablemate, which has greater reach.
  • News International is thought to make considerable money from Sun Bingo.
  • And low-lying Independent.co.uk has plenty of room for catch-up, but fared much better in 2010.

Remember that 2009, thanks to the economy’s downturn, was the year when even online advertising growth plateaued or reversed for many a publisher.

We will publish more fresh analysis of news publishers’ digital metrics in the near future. If you can help our understanding of the numbers above or elsewhere, or can clarify estimates further, please get in touch or leave a comment..