Independent News and Media has reported lower revenues and profits for the year to the end of December, but said it was continuing to make progress in implementing its new strategy.

INM said its pre-tax profits for the year came to €24.1m, which was ahead of expectations but over 15% lower on the previous year.

Total revenues for 2018 fell by 2.1% to €191.0m on the back of a decline in total advertising revenues of 8.8%, a decline in circulation revenues of 6.3% and a decline in commercial printing revenues of 6.2%. 

The company said it had taken a charge of €3.5m for exceptional legal costs to meet its obligations towards the Office of the Director of Corporate Enforcement and the Data Protection Commissioner in their respective investigations into an alleged data breach at the firm.

It said it was co-operating with the inspectors and the DPC in their respective investigations.

The company's chairman Murdoch MacLennan said INM continued to make progress in implementing its new strategy with the full support of its new Board and new Senior Executive Team. 

"We have recorded a financial performance for 2018 ahead of market expectations and I can assure you that despite the challenges facing the industry the board and senior executive team of your group are both determined and confident that we are heading in the right direction to build a sustainable business for the future and to create shareholder value," he added.

The company recently said it would cut approximately 30 jobs in its editorial, publishing and commercial operations.