Guardian and Observer report losses of £44.2m last year‎

The owner of The Guardian slumped to a pre-tax loss of £75.6m in the year to March as it ran up big costs on investing in new digital offerings and it took a big writedown on its radio business.

Guardian Media Group admitted operating losses at its newspaper arm, which owns The Guardian and The Observer, jumped to £44.2m from £33.1m a year earlier.

Newspaper revenues dipped only slightly to £196.2m as 16 per cent growth in digital, which now represents £46m in sales, largely offset tumbling print circulation.

The chief executive Andrew Miller has called for 70-100 volunteers for redundancy as he wants to save £25m in costs by 2016.

But he vowed not to cut the overall editorial budget as he shifts investment into digital.

Mr Miller has previously warned the group, which is owned by the not-for-profit Scott Trust, must cut costs to survive.

GMG would have posted a loss even without taking a £54m writedown on its radio business, which it has just sold to Global Radio. The group has a £226m cash and investment fund that provides some protection.