Connect Group has renewed its contract with News UK, securing a deal that generates £200m of revenue a year until 2024 and provides some respite after a tough period for the business.

Connect Group’s Smith News will continue UK distribution of titles including The Sun, The Times and Sunday Times as a result of the successful tender.

Connect Group said the deal was an endorsement of Smiths News' leading service offer and efficient route to market for both publishers and retailers. The two have worked together since the 1980s.

Mark Cashmore, the outgoing chief executive at the firm, said: "We are delighted to confirm this significant publisher agreement for our newspaper and magazine distribution business.

“Visibility of future revenues underpins the ability of Smiths News to continue to deliver strong profits and cash. The contract is good news for the supply chain as a whole and positions the group well to secure a similar outcome with our other publisher partners."

Connect Group has been plunged into crisis in recent months, with its until recently star-performer Tuffnells' performance seemingly stuck in reverse.

In an update last month it revealed Tuffnells' struggles, plans to close its Pass My Parcel operation and the fact that Cashmore would be following chief financial officer David Bauernfeind out of the door as soon as a successor was in place and ready.