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Smiths News trading in line with market expectations

(Sharecast News) - Newspaper and magazine distributor Smiths News said on Wednesday that trading for the year to the end of August 2024 remains in line with market expectations. In an update ahead of its annual general meeting, the company said that as previously announced, it has secured contract renewals across 74% of its current publisher revenue streams to at least 2029, underpinning revenues in the medium term, alongside continuing to secure additional national and regional contract awards.

Last October, Smiths said it had secured contracts for the distribution of the Midlands News Association regional press titles, and for newspaper distribution of News UK titles in its existing London territories. All new contracts have begun and are fully integrated into the group's established UK footprint, it said.

Smiths said the six months to 25 February benefitted from a number of one-off events that had a positive impact on sales, including the 2022 FIFA World Cup and the State Funeral of Her Majesty the Queen.

"We remain confident that revenues for FY24 will be in line with market expectations, but we do not envisage repeat events of this quantum falling in the six months to 24 February 2024," it said.

Chief executive Jonathan Bunting said: "Whilst we are cognisant of the ongoing financial pressure on consumers and the broader macro-economic outlook, our focus remains on securing and maximising revenue opportunities in our core newspaper and magazine distribution business, whilst exploring growth initiatives in adjacent areas that leverage on our existing capabilities and market presence."

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