Digital platforms fuel INM growth

The group has announced it will provide information connected to its possible bid for Newstalk to the Office of the Director of Corporate Enforcement

Digital platforms fuel INM growth

Rolling News

Independent News and Media (INM) has announced a 12% increase in its pre-tax profits, which rose to almost €42m last year.

Its revenue increased by 0.7% rising to €323m as print circulation and advertising income fell, but digital revenues rose.

INM has also announced that it will comply with a request from the Office of the Director of Corporate Enforcement to provide information relating to its possible attempt to acquire Newstalk.

The group said that this is, "a procedural matter that does not involve any conclusion that there has been a breach of law by the company or its officers."

INM says it is taking all necessary steps to meet the ODCE’s request.

Irish businessman Denis O'Brien is the largest shareholder in INM and Communicorp, which owns Newstalk.

It has also confirmed, that prior to being contacted by the ODCE, it had established its own formal independent review to examine and inquire into the same issue. This confidential, independent review is being carried out at the Board’s request, by senior counsel and a senior independent governance expert.

A difference of opinion arose between INM Chief Executive Robert Pitt and Chairman Leslie Buckley in relation to the terms of that possible acquisition – it is understood to have been related to the question of Newstalk’s valuation.

This caused Mr Pitt to raise the issue with Jerome Kennedy the senior independent non-executive director on the board. He established a board sub-committee which subsequently reported to the full board that no issue of concern had arisen.

INM has stated that exploration of the possibility of bidding for the station was abandoned at a preliminary stage.