NFRN welcomes JPI Media decision to include pro rata terms in price increases

NFRN welcomes JPI Media decision to include pro rata terms in price increases

The Federation of Independent Retailers (NFRN) has welcomed the decision by news publisher JPI Media to include pro rata terms for newsagents as part of price increases for its local and regional titles.

From December 27 and throughout January 2022, a total of 177 editions across England, Scotland and the Republic of Ireland will go up by 5p or 10p.

All price increases will include pro rata profit margins for retailers.

NFRN National President Narinder Randhawa said: “This is great news and a timely New Year boost for thousands of retailers.

“When publishers put the prices of their titles up, there is always a danger that retailers will suffer because of reduced profits, which has recently been the case. But it is pleasing to see that our calls for fairness have been heeded by JPI.

“We encourage our members to get behind these important local community titles and look forward to building on this with JPI.”

It comes after News UK Direct to Retail (DTR) told its retailers last week that it was increasing delivery charges by 3% next year, with 50% of the increase deferred until 5 July as “a gesture of goodwill”.

In a letter to newsagents, the publisher of the Sun and The Times argued that although it had frozen delivery charges last year during the pandemic it now needed to increase its charges to reflect increased costs.

Narinder Randhawa said: “Last year, we were relieved when News UK DTR, along with Smiths News and Menzies Distribution, took the common-sense decision to suspend any carriage charge reviews in the light of the challenging position that independent retailers were facing.

“Nothing has changed. Times are still incredibly tough for independent retailers and service levels are unacceptably low.

“News UK DTR pressing ahead with an increase to its charge will only add to newsagents’ angst.

“The company is also running the risk of causing yet even more news retailers to exit the industry. For swathes of retailers, handling news is becoming increasingly unprofitable.”