Management Commentary

Management Commentary

The year 2020 was a breakthrough year for the Group’s media publications in terms of the growth of digital subscriptions. The key reason for the growth in digital subscriptions was the change in the attitudes and habits of people: they are more willing to pay for high-quality digital content in their own language. The change was supported by the general background – objective journalism is more and more appreciated in a society dominated by global fragmented information. A major setback hit the Group in mid-March when the Baltic States imposed a state of emergency to curb the spread of the coronavirus. This in turn led to sudden changes in the economic environment. The most susceptible companies to the effects of the restrictions were the Group’s media companies, especially outdoor media and the ticket sales platform in Latvia. As we look back on the past year we can state that owing to our quick reaction, clear and open communication, keeping of promises, correct management decisions, and the loyalty and contribution of all Group employees, Ekspress Grupp was able to cope with the corona crisis and continue to provide our readers with what they needed the most - fast, relevant and reliable information in the most appropriate channels.

Mari-Liis Rüütsalu
Chairman of the Management Board, Chief Executive Officer of the Group
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In the digital business, everyone makes fast progress. If someone starts to use anything new, half a year later, everyone will be using it. Although it could be assumed that some stability will arrive soon because all market participants have already come out with their key products, in reality this is not yet the case. On the contrary, the development of the digital service area is picking up speed throughout the world. There are many global companies with huge development capacities and they are able to progress very quickly. In certain specialised areas, one thousand people may programme the same piece. For example, in our market in the context of recruitment of specialists the fact how to keep pace with such fast developments is already a challenge.

Kaspar Hanni
Member of the Management Board, Development Director of Ekspress Grupp
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We live in a period of extraordinary changes and challenges. The unexpected and extraordinary events of 2020 presented challenges to the normal activities of people and businesses around the world. During the pandemic and the related economic disequilibrium and social unrest, AS Ekspress Grupp has managed to maintain the stability in its companies, keep sufficient liquidity and partly increase its sales revenue despite the impact of the pandemic.

Signe Kukin
Member of the Management Board, Chief Financial Officer of the Group
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