Specialist publisher Mark Allen Group marks 'record' year as profits grow by third

Dec 11, 2019

This report about MAG appeared in UK Press Gazette.

"Profits at specialist magazine publisher Mark Allen Group grew by more than a third last year, according to new full-year results.

The company has said it plans to “continue growing the business both organically and by acquisition” following its “record” year.

Its full-year accounts, covering 12 months to the 31 March 2019, show pre-tax profits tax grew by 35.6 per cent to £6.8m.

MAG publishes about 100 magazine and journals, including B2B brands such as HR, Print Week, The Optician and the British Journal of Nursing.

It also has a number of consumer titles in its music and division including Gramophone and Classical Music. Most of its titles are still print-focused, but one of its biggest brands is the online-only Community Care aimed at social workers.

According to new documents filed at Companies House, MAG has reported turnover of £51.3m for 2019, up 18 per cent from £43.4m the year before.

Its earnings (EBITDA) increased by 17 per cent to £8.5m for the year.

The results continue an upward trajectory for the group, when revenues grew by 16.8 per cent to £43.4m and EBITDA rose by 30.5 per cent to £7.2m.

MAG reported a cash balance of £4.5m compared to £2.4m a year earlier, which it said it would use to “continue to seek any possible opportunities for growth”.

In a statement, chairman and founder Mark Allen (pictured) said: “The directors intend to continue growing the business both organically and by acquisition. The pace at which they do so will depend on the prevailing economic conditions and outlook.”

MAG has already bought 12 B2B transport magazines from UKI Media and Events in May. It also bought the 163-year-old The Engineer magazine and its associated event Subcon from Centaur Media later the same month.

In December 2018 MAG acquired all of music publisher Rhinegold’s assets, including five publications and the Music and Drama Education Expo event.

Almost a fifth (17 per cent) of MAG’s revenues came from paid-for magazine subscriptions in 2018/19.

Allen told Press Gazette earlier this year he was a “firm believer” in subscriptions as “the best form of capturing the support of your readers”.

Some 35 per cent of the company’s revenues came from advertising and 39 per cent from conferences and events."