Future plc has today revealed continued growth in both media and magazine revenue today as part of its Interim Results for Half-Year (HY) 2022.
Future reported a GBP £131.72 million increase in revenue since HY 2021, through a combination of organic growth and strategic acquisitions, including Dennis Publishing, WhatCulture.com, and Waive. Media revenue grew by 5%, driven by digital advertising, while magazines grew by 3% with a higher proportion of revenue derived from subscriptions.
A new focus on video
With an increased demand for video impressions alongside premium content, Future rolled out video across its ‘Buying Guides’ and ‘Deals’ pages in January 2022. Through providing video content across its eCommerce portfolio, Future tapped into high-intent audiences, with a ‘ready to buy’ mindset which drove more than £1 billion in eCommerce sales for the publisher in 2021. In addition, Future integrated Video Multiple Ad Playlists (VMAP), an IAB standard, into its capabilities, contributing to a 40% increase in video organic growth.
Digital advertising overall performed well in HY 2022 with favourable dynamics of endemic audiences, strong data, and video, driving 10% organic growth and a 5% increase in yield Year-on-Year (YoY).
Increased vertical diversification
Technology and gaming remain at the heart of Future’s strategy, evidenced by its technology portfolio staying at #1 in the US for audience reach in Comscore’s Technology News category for the entire half year. To accelerate market leadership opportunities further, Future announced a double acquisition of WhatCulture.com and Waive in 2022 to strengthen its position in the Video and Gaming sector, and extend Future’s social trend analysis capabilities respectively.
Homes continue to maintain their #1 position as UK leaders in the sector, and have broken into the top ten in the US. The company also made strong gains in Women’s Lifestyle – female audiences have been Future’s fastest growing demographic in the last four years, seeing a 175% growth. The publisher now reaches over 15.5 million women in the UK, through household names like Marie Claire and Woman&Home, and the most recent acquisition of WhoWhatWear (which completes in June) will boost Future’s global female audiences further.
Bolstering wealth expertise
A core part of Future’s strategy is to grow new audiences in the Wealth vertical, which is driving success across the entire Future portfolio. Benefitting from the expertise of acquired brands, such as Kiplinger, The Week and MoneyWeek, subscriptions grew organically by 5% YoY, equating to £70.2m across the UK and US markets.
Future is also leveraging its knowledge in one part of the business to deliver audiences to another – SmartBrief’s newsletter technology is now being used to target Look After My Bills customers with money saving content amid the ongoing energy crisis, funnelling traffic to Future’s organic site, The Money Edit.
Furthermore, access to rich first-party audience segments from the Aperture platform, supported by GoCompare’s consumer data, empowers Future to reach a vast Wealth and Finance readership across its entire portfolio with contextually relevant content. In the last 30 days, for example, Future saw 2.7 million people search for car insurance, representing a valuable audience of high-intent consumers accessible through the publisher’s quality content.
Zillah Byng-Thorne, Future’s Chief Executive Officer said: “We are pleased to deliver a positive set of results for HY 2022. Through the continued execution of our diversification strategy, we have delivered robust year-on-year growth despite an inflationary environment and prior year comparators enhanced by the impact of COVID-19.
“The strength of our specialist, trusted content continues to attract a high value audience, making us a partner of choice for advertisers. Our newest verticals, including Homes, Women’s Beauty & Fashion, and Wealth & Savings have performed well and generated strong brand awareness.
“In what has been a busy period, we were delighted to acquire and complete the integration of Dennis, and to acquire WhatCulture.com and Waive, which add incremental value. We also look forward to bringing our latest acquisition, WhoWhatWear1, into the Group, which enhances our leadership position in the Women’s vertical.”