Increased ad revenues and sweeping cost cuts have reaped rewards for the UK's largest newspaper publisher Trinity Mirror.

The company, which publishes 240 local and regional newspapers and five national titles including tabloid flagship the Daily Mirror, posted a 25% rise in 2004 pretax profits to £216.8 million ($414.6m, €315.8m).

Advertising revenue for its regional titles grew by 5.3%, while the nationals posted a 2.1% ad revenue gain - the first in four years.

Circulation at the Daily Mirror dropped three per cent following the publication of fake Iraqi prisoner abuse photographs in May, but the paper reported a pickup in sales towards the end of the year. Overall sales fell by 0.8% in 2004.

Trinity also has extensive internet interests, including the Fish4 local directories. Says ceo Sly Bailey: "Our digital activities have been refined and developed across the Group during 2004 and will form a key pillar of the strategy going forwards."

Data sourced from BBC Online; additional content by WARC staff