E-commerce is "the future of digital media"

One minute briefing: John Paton, chair of The Independent, on data, digital transformation and why he hates the word 'content'.

by Lauren Brown

Many media companies tightened their proverbial belts during the pandemic, for good reason - the industry depends on advertising spend, which fell globally between 4.1 and 7.5 per cent last year.

Yet at the end of its fiscal year on September 30 2020, The Independent’s revenue was up 12 per cent and profit by 18 per cent, according to chairman John Paton. Having just finished the first quarter of the group’s new fiscal year, revenue is up 26 percent, he adds. 

Part of the reason is that The Independent has been a digital-only title for over four years, and digital advertising spend has risen over the last year, following a very well-established trend of online and particularly mobile advertising cannibalising traditional forms.

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