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Future to sell US operations?

Media powerhouse Future has in its latest pre-close trading update hinted that a sale of its US operations could be a possibility.

The company predicts a six per cent drop in revenue for the year ending September 30th. The UK business, which has already reduced its headcount by ten per cent, is only expected to post a two per cent drop.

But the US story is very different.

The position in the US is significantly more challenging,” a statement reads.

It reflects a combination of a much smaller scale of business; the radically different business model applicable to US magazine publishing generally compared with the UK; limited portfolio protection with exposure to only three special-interest sectors; and a faster-declining print advertising market.

In July the Group announced steps to accelerate the transition of Future US into a primarily digital business.

However, with trading conditions in the US reflecting ongoing weakness and decreasing visibility at newsstand, and an acceleration in the year-on-year growth rate in digital revenues, the Board is now considering a wider range of strategic options in respect of its US operations.”

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