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Bermuda Press Holdings posts $2.15m profit

Earnings boost: Bermuda Press (Holdings) Ltd declared a full-year profit of $2.15 million, as expenses were trimmed (File photograph)

Bermuda Press (Holdings) Ltd’s profit surged more than 77 per cent last year, even as revenue fell.

The company, which owns The Royal Gazette, as well as commercial printing, retail and real-estate interests, and the eMoo e-commerce website, reported net profit of $2.15 million for the year ended September 30, 2018.

Profit was up $939,000 from the prior year.

Overall revenue decreased to $25.52 million compared with $26.65 million in the prior year, a fall of more than $1.1 million.

Operating expenses fell by more than $2 million to $23.26 million from $25.38 million.

BPHL stated: “Increased expenses, resulting from payroll tax changes and health insurance premiums have been offset by cost savings in all operating costs as a result of ongoing efforts and improved efficiencies.”

Basic earnings per share increased to $1.21 from 54 cents in 2017. The market price for BPHL’s shares traded most recently at $7 compared with $6.15 a year ago.

The company’s local real-estate holdings remain the most profitable segment, with an overall occupancy rate of 97 per cent in 2018, of which more than 57 per cent is occupied by third-party tenants.

The board declared dividends of 26 cents per share to the shareholders during the 2018 fiscal year. The board will continue to review the company’s performance and the ability to further increase dividend payments to shareholders.

During 2018, some of the key areas of focus were:

• Closure of the Office Solutions commercial stationery operations.

• Acquisition of equipment in preparation for the launch of live video into news coverage at The Royal Gazette.

• Continued our efforts to maximise efficiency of the print operations and expand the product offering to include sign printing, including the relocation of equipment from the Bermuda Press Digital to the main print facility on Addendum Lane.

• Launch of the new eMoo platform.

• Acquisition of the minority interest in Crown House Properties.

The company added that no shares have yet been purchased in association with the $1 million share buyback announcement of March 1, 2016.

BPHL’s Annual General Meeting is scheduled for 10.30am on Friday, March 22, 2019 at The Royal Gazette building, 2 Par-la-Ville Road, Hamilton.