Picture: 123RF/ZERBOR
Picture: 123RF/ZERBOR

Printing and publishing group Caxton warned on Thursday of a hefty profit fall and writedowns after Covid-19 hit production and sales.

The group said demand for its products and services were “severely impaired” during its year to end-June, with all operating units affected to a varying degree.

The group expects headline earnings per share, a widely used profit measure that excludes certain one-off items, to fall as much as 80.9% compared with the prior period’s 101.6c.

It expects to report a loss per share of between 14.8c and 16.4c, from earnings per share of 86.7c previously.

The group has also had to make provisions for retrenchment costs, while writing down the value of equipment.

In May, the group said it was withdrawing from magazine publishing and associated businesses.

The titles affected are Bona, Country Life, Essentials, Food & Home, Garden & Home, People, Rooi Rose, Vrouekeur, Woman & Home and Your Family.

Caxton’s board said at the time the steady and continuous reduction in advertising spend in the magazine sector as well as the decline in circulation revenues had, over a number of years, significantly reduced the viability of the magazine business.

In morning trade on Friday, Caxton’s share was unchanged at R4, having fallen about 45% so far in 2020.

gernetzkyk@businesslive.co.za

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