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Guardian Media on St Vincent Street, Port-of-Spain.

Guardian Media Limited, the parent company of the T&T Guardian and CNC3 has reported a pre-tax profit for 2020 of $7 million.

In an advertisement that appears on page 51 of today’s Guardian newspaper, the company’s Chairman Peter Clarke said the results were achieved in a pandemic that brought unprecedented challenges to the media industry in 2020.

He said the COVID-19 challenges provided opportunities from the resulting transformations in digital media and business processing.

“For the year ending December 31, 2020, Guardian Media reported a profit before taxation of $7 million compared to a $7.1 million loss in the prior year. Revenues reported for the year ending December 31, 2020 were $110.6 million ($120.3 million—2019) reflecting a decline of $9.7 million or 8 per cent in advertising revenues due to COVID-19 challenges offset by one-off election revenues. Expenses fell by 17 per cent year over year.” Clarke wrote

Against a backdrop of revenue challenges resulting from market disruptions, shrinking advertising budgets, economic uncertainties and COVID-19, Clarke said the GML management has worked diligently during the year to navigate the challenging market environment and mitigate pandemic effects through significantly reducing costs and launching innovative virtual media solutions designed to satisfy the new needs arising from the pandemic.

Clarke said, “We also report a strong fourth quarter performance. For the quarter ended December 31, 2020, Guardian Media reported profit before taxation of $9 million, up by $3 million or 51 per cent from last year’s quarterly results of $6 million. Whilst fourth quarter revenues trailed prior year revenues due to COVID-19, our results benefited from intensified costs cutting, efficiency improvements, robust credit management and net change in defined benefit pension plan.”

He pointed out that the company’s balance sheet metrics remain healthy and its capital levels provide GML with the strength to endure challenging times as well as to invest in the future.

Clarke said despite significant uncertainty in the current economic environment GML remained committed to enhancing shareholder value while exercising appropriate stewardship over its resources and reinforce its view that the future continues to be promising for its franchise.

Based on this, the Board of Directors approved final dividends of $0.05 per ordinary share (2019—NIL) and 6 per cent Preference Shareholders will receive a final dividend of 3 per cent.

Dividends will be paid on June 16, 2021.