Nation Media Group ( NMG ) has recorded a tenfold increase in net profit to Sh493.1 million in the year ended December 2021 on recovery of business post Covid-19 pandemic.
The region’s leading news organisation grew profits from 47.9 million on strong sales and advertising revenues. Total revenues rose 12 percent year on year to Sh7.6 billion.
The Group has resumed dividend payments with a proposal to pay Sh1.50 per share. NMG chairman Wilfred Kiboro said the company hopes to improve dividend payout as the company accelerates growth.
Nation’s digital transformation journey accelerated during the post-pandemic to cushion the drop in newspaper circulation. Digital revenues increased by 20 percent to account for 6 percent of the Group’s turnover.
“2021 was a very challenging year. We were still experiencing the impact of Covid-19 but our focus was on recovery while still pursuing transformation agenda,” NMG chief executive Stephen Gitagama said.
Nation Media Group is banking on its large online presence and a revamped digital plan to grow sales. The Group is working to leverage huge online presence to monetise the online audiences into sustainable revenue streams.
“Going forward bulk of the revenues will come through going digital. The legacy media like print will still remain for a few years but distribution will be mainly digital. We hope to reduce reliance on print gradually to not more than 25 percent,” Mr Kiboro said.
With seven out of every 10 Kenyans having access to the Internet, online content consumption is fast-gaining currency in the country which NMG hopes to seize as it grows into a modern digital content publisher to wean it off legacy media.
Broadcast revenues grew from 20 to 22 percent cutting the over reliance on print revenues which declined from 75 percent to 72 percent. Nation Courier reported a 13 percent growth in revenue.
The company will place greater focus on growing reader revenue from content delivered digitally, including exploring new revenue streams in the events and technology space.