ADVFN today announces its unaudited interim results for the six months ended 31 December 2020 (the "Period").
Chief Executive's Statement
These are very uncertain times, but as I have often alluded to, times of uncertainty are good for ADVFN. People become more engaged with their investments when the future looks difficult and the rolling confinements and the new work-from-home environments ("WFH") have provided impetus to our audience's desire to trade and invest. Market volatility has also helped. Counter-intuitively it is not necessarily a bullish period that has helped drive ADVFN revenue, because it turns out that solid profits for investors only fuels complacency and complacency is not good for our sales.
Advertising and subscriptions have been growing and so revenue, which sees us producing a solid bottom-line profit. At the end of 2019 and the beginning of 2020, a sudden and unexpected drop in advertising sales, coupled with a lack of subscription growth, caused us to re-evaluate our processes and reorganise the business from top to bottom. With great good fortune, we decided to become a fully 'WFH' enterprise with a new, much reduced cost base and re-engineered business processes around the turn of that year. This dramatic change was almost complete when the pandemic started, which by good fortune we were then pre-prepared for.
This intersection of events has meant we have made good progress across 2020 with the end of the first half showing a profit of £264,000. At this stage there seems no end in sight to the disruption of the pandemic and even with an end of the pandemic itself, be it hopefully soon, the global economic aftermath will, we believe, be with us for years to come. We will therefore remain an important destination for those wishing to actively navigate the trying times ahead and we feel a period of investor complacency is not a prospect for the foreseeable future. As such we believe that we will continue to grow for the foreseeable future.
While we expect growth at a similar pace in the coming half, our strategy is to be very conservative and we will expend our energies growing our platform's capacity rather than looking to broaden our audience. We are very optimistic about our near and medium-term prospects, but it seems foolish to contemplate anything but a conservative risk profile to at least the year end.
While we cannot take credit for fate suddenly providing us with a strong hand, we can lay claim to having reshaped ADVFN during the pandemic's disruption into a profitable business that looks set for a strong performance in 2021.
Key financial performance for the period has been summarised as follows:
Six Months ended
Six Months ended
31 December 2020
31 December 2019
Profit / (loss) for the period
Operating profit / (loss)
Loss per share - basic (see note 3)