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Business

Sale of Bath publisher cost DC Thomson £41m

DC Thomson has revealed how much closing down Bath-based publisher Parragon cost in its annual financial results.

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DC Thomson’s main offices in Dundee

The Dundee-based media organisation, which started publishing newspapers in 1905, said in its statement that despite difficulties, its print circulation has held up "comparatively well."

DC Thomson announced it would be shutting down Parragon, a children’s book publisher with operations in the US and Australia, earlier in 2018 due to a declining market and structural issues "which [we] could not see being resolved."

It has now been revealed that the sale cost the publisher a staggering £41m before tax, due to reduced sales as the business was wound down as stocks were sold off, redundancy payments and costs in relation to the termination of contracts. Around 245 members of staff globally were made redundant.

DC Thomson announced it would be shutting down Parragon, a children’s book publisher with operations in the US and Australia, earlier in 2018

The Companies House statement also outlined its print circulation performance, stating that newspaper print copy revenues were £34.1m despite a reduction in volume all titles continued to contribute margin. Magazine print copy sales were £42.7m, down 1% compared to 2017.

Whilst paper prices continue to plague British publishers, DC Thomson is not the exception to the rule and outlines that it continues to attempt to mitigate these costs as they are influenced by market conditions.

DC Thomson also owns Shortlist Media, which is focusing on shifting its major revenue from print display to multiplatform and cites further digital investment into 2019. DC Thomson highlighted its acquisition of specialist publishing company Aceville, which owns a range of specialist magazines the publisher says will bring in new areas of publishing and thus further profitability.

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