Rupert Murdoch has put the value of The Sun newspaper to zero, citing a dramatic fall in print advertisements. The right-wing paper has reported a £197 million loss which is one of its worst years ever. Its parent News Corp says that it the tabloid is unlikely to return to growth. Four decades and counting, the paper was the most widely read paper in the U.K. However, in 2020, it was overtaken by the Daily Mail.
Murdoch’s News Corp filed accounts with British government regulators on Thursday and published it on Friday. It said that the tabloid’s value of publishing rights and titles was zero as of June 2020. The tabloid had a value of £112 million the previous year.
There was an £84 million impairment charge. It also mentioned £80 million in costs as a result of its infamous phone hacking charge. Journalists from the paper had illegally tapped phones and bribed the police to obtain information on scandals. This included £52 million in legal fees and damages that was paid to civil claimants. This amount has increased from £27 million paid in 2019.
The news conglomerate said that it has already settled many claims. It said that it is also in the process of settling other claims. It also said that it was unable to estimate the costs of future claims which have not as yet reached the courts.
The company also said that its priority was to sustain its top most position in the UK and to maintain relevance for its readers. However, its circulation had dramatic decreased. Although circulation figures of The Sun are no longer available publicly, it reportedly sells less than a million copies each day. When it was at the pinnacle of its performance, during the nineties, its circulation figures were pegged at 5 million per day.
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