In this regard, the editorial committee of Repubblica stressed that the publisher's communications "do not add sufficient new elements to change the position expressed in the document of the Assembly of journalists of last October 14" and reiterated, therefore, the "insufficiency "of the" simple assurance of a commitment by the publisher and management to play the role of shareholders in order to guarantee the best future ". The Cdr also notes in the publisher's communications "the absence of a clear and unquestionable position taken by the shareholder on the real intentions of selling or not of the group".Returning to the accounts, the period ended in red with the accounting effect deriving from the sale of Persidera. Consolidated revenues, 441.5 million euro, recorded a 6% decrease compared to the first nine months of 2018. "Revenues from digital activities represent 12.0% of consolidated sales (14.8% on the brand Republic) and the digital products of the various newspapers of the Group reached 126 thousand subscribers at the end of September 2019 ", specifies the note. Circulation revenues, down 4.8%, recorded a better performance to the rest of the market which overall has lost 8.2% of sales between newsstands and subscriptions.
Costs also continued to decline: "They are 5.2% lower than in the first nine months of 2018; both personnel costs (-6.2%) and other costs (-4.5%) decreased ". Moreover, the savings do not yet completely discount "the restructuring of the editorial staff of The Republic"and the" closure of two further printing establishments ". Going down the income statement, the adjusted gross operating margin amounted to € 35.9 million and" before the application of IFRS 16 would have been € 25.1 million, which compares with the 31.6 of the first nine months of 2018. The consolidated net result recorded a loss of 18.3 million, (-17.3 million excluding the effects of IFRS 16) "acknowledging the effects of the sale of Persidera ( 16.9 million) and charges for restructuring with an impact on the net result of 3.7 million. Net of these effects, the consolidated net result is positive for 2.2 million ", the group explains.
Positive signs come from the last quarter, which "shows an improvement compared to the trends found in the first few months of the year". The adjusted operating result is 4.3 million, down compared to the third quarter of 2018 (-15.9%) but at a "decidedly" lower pace than that seen in the first half (-38.5%) .
In designing the possible scenarios for the remaining part of the year, in fact, the Board of Directors recalls that "the results of the second and third quarters, which are substantially in line with the corresponding period of the previous year (1.0 million), show a trend significantly better than the first few months of the year ".
By the end of 2019 "no significant market developments can be seen that differed from those affecting the first nine months. For the fourth quarter we expect to record further effects from the measures implemented: the relaunch of the newspaper the Republic and the editorial restructuring, the rationalization resulting from the closure of two further printing establishments, the reorganization of GEDI News Network and the consequent further opportunities for efficiencies and synergies, the development of technological platforms with particular reference to CRM and publishing systems. It can therefore be expected that, in the absence of unforeseeable events, the Group will register a positive result at the end of the year, excluding the impact of the sale of Persidera and any other non-ordinary components ".