M&G circulation up

The Mail & Guardian continues to build its reputation as South Africa’s fastest-growing quality newspaper recording an 11,45% year-on-year increase in its circulation in the last six months of last year.

The M&G showed the second-highest percentage increase in copy sales out of all urban newspapers, while quality publications such as Business Day lost 1,87% of it’s circulation and The Sunday Independent faced a 7,06% fall in circulation in a year-on-year comparison.

This is the fourth consecutive period in which the M&G has shown a year-on-year percentage increase in excess of 10%.

The latest figures released by the Audit Bureau of Circulations (ABC) for urban daily and weekly newspapers held few if any surprises.

The Sowetan Sunday World, the M&G and Soccer-Laduma remain the top three performers.

M&G editor Howard Barrell said the paper’s growth was the result of “an outstanding team effort across the company in what have been difficult times”.

He added: “These figures will be very difficult for the M&G to sustain in coming months. Media market conditions continue to deteriorate. We will continue, however, to give our readers what they want of us: a mixture of intelligence, quality information and opinion, and cheek.”

Released on Thursday, the latest figures reflect very little movement among urban dailies, which should come as a relief for media owners who have been facing dwindling circulation figures, increased production costs and a reduction in advertising spend.

Dailies showing marginal year-on-year growth include Beeld which is up 2,77%, The Herald which is up 3,17% and The Namibian up 2,46%.

Urban weeklies are performing better with total year-on-year sales up 6,89%. The growth is mainly attributable to growth by Sunday papers and the launch of Media24’s Sunday Sun.

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