Free Paper Publisher Metro International Back in the Black

By: E&P Staff

Metro International, the publisher of free commuter dailies worldwide, reported a second-quarter net profit of 476,000 euros, or $617,000, on strong results from its Hong Kong and Swedish papers overcoming weak or discontinued operations elsewhere. In the 2009 Q2 period, Metro recorded a loss of 3.7 million euros, or $4.8 million.

Metro said it was on track to report an operating profit for the full year of 2010.

Q2 net revenue fell 6% from the year-ago period, but on a same-store basis rose 10%.

During the second quarter, Metro won the contract to distribute the newspaper in Hong Kong’s mass transit system. Also during the quarter, the company agreed to divest of its Greek operations, but the newspaper will continue to be published under a franchise agreement.

Earlier this month, Metro announced it was buying at least 15% of the Mexican joint venture Publicaciones Metropolitanas, or Publimetro Mexico, from Inmobiliaria Torraco, which holds a 23.54% stake in the newspaper Publimetro Mexico.

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