Richard Desmond's Northern & Shell sees profits soar after Channel 5 saleComments Off on Richard Desmond's Northern & Shell sees profits soar after Channel 5 sale
Profits at Richard Desmond’s Northern & Shell group — owner of the Express, Star and OK! titles — surged last year on the back of the £463 million sale of Channel 5, according to Companies House accounts.
Figures for 2014 showed Northern & Shell registering pre-tax profits of £333.7 million, nearly 10 times higher than the £34.9 million in 2013.
Payouts to directors soared as a result of the deal, up to £18.3 million from £1.9 million the previous year. The highest paid director went from £589,000 to £4.6 million. Chairman Desmond earned £795,000 in pay and pension contributions.
Stripping out the windfall from Channel 5’s sale a year ago, Northern & Shell is facing “challenging” markets and made an operating loss of £25.7 million after £30 million in one-off costs, including those related to the sale.
That was down on a £37.1 million profit the year before. The company declined to comment.