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Shares I Love: Future

Future has transitioned from print media towards online publishing and e-commerce
Shares I Love: Future
  • New managers have transitioned Future away from print media towards online publishing and e-commerce
  • It has traded strongly through the pandemic and has more than 311m online users – a 31 per cent year-on-year increase

James Goldstone, co-manager of Invesco UK Equity Income Fund (GB00BJ04HX60) and Invesco Select Trust’s (IVPU) UK equity portfolio, explains why he holds Future (FUTR).

“Future is a media business which publishes a range of print and online special interest magazines including PC Gamer, TechRadar and What HiFi, and runs events such as The Photography Show. The business, which operates in the UK and the US, had a troubled history and its performance mirrored the decline in the wider print media sector.

“But over the past seven years a new management team has successfully transitioned Future from print media towards online publishing and e-commerce. The new model generates revenue from online advertising and commissions from reader click-through. This is most evident with the TechRadar website, which publishes reviews of consumer electronics products alongside price comparison tables that take the reader to the retailer.

“Future’s wide range of brands also allows it to leverage the knowledge of its audience’s interests and preferences to offer advertisers an increasingly sophisticated and targeted means for engaging with audiences that matter to them.

“This e-commerce revenue is high-margin and accounts for a significant proportion of group profits. Future’s managers are actively acquiring traditional print titles whose profitability can be transformed with their online strategy. Growth has been achieved both organically and through acquisitions, and this remains the strategy going forward. Recent acquisitions include Marie Claire US, whose UK site Future already runs, TI Media and more recently GoCompare.

“I first invested in Future in late 2018. The company has traded strongly through the pandemic and should emerge from the crisis with its competitive position enhanced. With more than 311m online users of its sites – an increase of 31 per cent year on year – Future has become an increasingly important channel for consumers, retailers and advertisers.”