Kenya’s Nation Media warns on profit for this year

NAIROBI (Reuters) – Kenya’s Nation Media Group expects earnings this year to plunge by more than 25% due to higher costs and a weaker exchange rate, it said on Thursday.

The group, which publishes several newspapers and operates broadcast stations and online sites, blamed “relentless increases in prices of basic commodities”, including fuel, amid a steep weakening of the Kenyan shilling against the dollar.

“These factors have led to depressed consumer spending and increased cost of doing business,” it said in a statement sent from the stock exchange.

The weaker shilling has affected the cost of newsprint, Nation Media said, adding it was impossible to pass on the higher costs to consumers.

They were, however, partially countered by cost cuts and productivity improvements, the group said, without giving details.

In 2022, Nation Media’s pretax profit was 491.7 million shillings ($3.27 million).

($1 = 150.3000 Kenyan shillings)

(Reporting by Duncan Miriri; Editing by George Obulutsa and Mark Potter)