The Northern & Shell Media Group continued its development as a major force in the UK media landscape with an established international presence. The Group has a strong balance sheet, a healthy cash position and a valuable portfolio of media and lottery management assets. Since its acquisition in 2011, the Group’s lottery division, The Health Lottery, has been successfully established as a highly visible lottery product with strong brand recognition, which continues to raise substantial funds for health related good causes throughout Great Britain. In the Group’s publishing divisions, investment continues to be made in the newspaper business with the development of its digital platforms and assets. In magazine publishing the Northern & Shell titles have consolidated their position in their respective markets.
Following the sale of Channel 5 in 2014, the Group has pursued its strategic aim to rationalise its operations down to its core activities of publishing and printing, lotteries and property. During 2015, the Group ceased its insurance activities and on 1 April 2016 disposed of its legacy television broadcasting business, the Portland TV division. A strong balance sheet, with net assets of almost £400 million, leaves the Group strategically well placed to pursue new opportunities as they arise, including the residential led development on its 15.5 acre site in London Docklands, for which it has received planning permission.