March 5, 2018 / 12:19 PM / 13 days ago

Daily Mirror publisher to become 'Reach' after Daily Express buy

LONDON (Reuters) - Daily Mirror publisher Trinity Mirror plans to change its name to Reach, reflecting the British firm’s expanded stable of newspapers after last month’s deal to buy the Daily Express and Daily Star titles, it said on Monday.

The two newspaper titles owned by Express Newspapers alongside The Mirror newspaper, which is owned by Trinity Mirror, are seen on display in a newsagents in central London, Britain, February 9, 2018. REUTERS/Simon Dawson/Files

The name change will be proposed at the group’s annual shareholders’ meeting on May 3, Trinity Mirror said.

The group also published 2017 results which showed revenue fell 12.6 percent to 623.2 million pounds ($861 million), and pretax profit down 8 percent.

Trinity Mirror blamed the difficult trading environment for the declines, as readers and advertisers move online, and reiterated its belief that by buying the Daily Express and other titles, it would be better placed to grow in the medium term.

The acquisition, completed on Feb. 28, unites tabloids from opposite sides of the political spectrum and with conflicting views on Brexit, in a strategy aimed at creating a bigger company better able to cope with the switch away from traditional print news.

Illustrating that challenge, Trinity Mirror said underlying print advertising revenues were 19.3 percent lower in 2017.

Trinity Mirror said it expected the acquisition of the Daily Express and other titles to be earnings enhancing in 2018 and saw the outcome for the year in line with expectations. It also lifted its final dividend by 6 percent to 3.55 pence per share.

Shares in Trinity Mirror, which has a market capitalisation of 225.4 million pounds, traded up 2.9 percent at 77.3 pence at 1056 GMT.

($1 = 0.7239 pounds)

Reporting by Sarah Young; Editing by Alexander Smith

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