Smiths News has reported a hike in full-year sales and profits, as it continues to diversify in a bid to mitigate falling newspaper and magazine sales.

Pre-tax profits rose 23.1% to £47.5m in the year to 31 August, on sales up 4% to £1.8bn, the newspaper and magazine wholesaler said.

It attributed the increases to the integration of Dawson Holdings, which it acquired in June last year for £20m, as well as the acquisition of The Consortium in April.

Newspaper like-for-like sales fell 2.1% and magazine sales fell 6.6% during the year, although the decreases were an improvement on 2011, when they fell by 2.5% and 9% respectively.

“We have shown tremendous resilience in our core newspaper and magazine distribution business and made substantial progress in our books division Bertrams,” said CEO Mark Cashmore.

“Our more recent acquisition of The Consortium represents another step forward in our diversification strategy as we look to broaden our market reach in new areas of specialist distribution.”