Smiths van

Connect Group-owned Smith News has renewed a major deal with magazine importer Seymour Distribution worth almost £400m.

This latest win comes just weeks after Connect Group’s latest annual results revealed a 200% collapse in profit for the year to 31 August 2018.

The agreement secures all Smiths News' distribution territories with Seymour from 2020 through to 2025. The deal with Seymour, one of the largest importers of magazines into the UK, represents revenues of around £79m a year, according to Connect Group.

It follows Smith News’ recent renewal of contracts with News UK and Frontline, worth £200m and £750m a year, respectively.

Connect Group said the three deals combined secure 36% of its total sales revenues and 61% of its magazine revenues.

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Jos Opdeweegh, chief executive officer, said: “I am delighted to confirm this new agreement with Seymour, one of our largest magazine partners.

“At our preliminary results, we identified the renewal of our distribution contracts as a key priority for FY2019. This contract maintains the momentum, supporting our goal of delivering sustainable value from the Smiths News business."

Connect Group’s annual profits were hit by its the failure to successfully integrate Tuffnells and Smith News and the poor performance of Pass My Parcel, which has since been sold.

The integration has since been abandoned, with a return to a more focused management of each division and the arrival of a new chief executive in the form of Jos Opdeweegh, former Americold CEO, who replaced Mark Cashmore in September this year.