Kenya’s Standard Group 2014 profit up 8 pct on advertising boos

NAIROBI (Reuters) – Kenyan media company Standard Group posted an 8.4 percent rise in pretax profit for 2014 due to growth in print, TV and radio advertising.The publisher of Kenya’s oldest and second-largest daily paper, the Standard, and an operator of a radio and TV station, said profit before tax climbed to 326 million shillings ($3.6 million), while revenue nudged marginally lower.Standard Group said it was optimistic about 2015 and wants to tap into Kenya’s fast economic growth, seen at 6.9 percent this year after the economy expanded an estimated 5.3 percent in 2014, according to the government.”We therefore expect a more robust economic environment which should provide new business opportunities,” the company said in a statement.However, it cautioned that a shift by the government – a major buyer of advertising in Kenya – from newspapers to digital platforms for public announcements could hurt business.Despite growing usage of the internet in Africa, traditional media such as newspapers remain profitable.The company said it would pay a final dividend of 0.50 shillings per share, unchanged from last year.($1 = 91.9000 Kenyan shillings)

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