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Posts Tagged ‘Marjorie Scardino’

Penguin’s eBook Sales Grew 128% Over The Last Year

Penguin’s eBook global sales grew 128 percent over the last year, and eBooks now represent 14 percent of the company’s total revenue.

Penguin’s parent company Pearson released these sales figures in its 2011 half year results report. Pearson saw sales up six percent to £2.4 billion with profits up 20 percent to £208 million.

Chief executive Marjorie Scardino released this statement: “Though market conditions are anything but easy, we are sufficiently encouraged by our start to the year to raise both our guidance and our dividend. Structural changes in our industries are gathering pace, but we are confident that we have the strategy, the competitive positions, the investment capacity and the culture to sustain our strong record of performance.”

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Sluggish Dollar Affects Penguin Results

Pearson, parent company of Penguin, has reported its 2007 interim results. Its education unit increased sales by 7% and moved into first-half profit of 5m pounds, while Penguin revenues were up 1% with profits 11% higher. “Our half-year results are always just a hint of our potential for the year, but certainly a strong hint this year,” said chief executive Marjorie Scardino. “Penguin’s publishing and profit are both solid and promising, as is its approach to change in publishing; and in Education we continue to set the pace as we use technology to personalize learning.”

Pearson Boss Falls Four in UK Media List

By way of the Bookseller, the Guardian reports that Pearson boss Marjorie Scardino has fallen four places in the Guardian’s “Media 100″, the newspaper’s power-list of the media world’s movers and shakers. She is the only book publisher in the list, Reed‘s Crispin Davis having dropped out in 2004. Placed at 41, Scardino is one below Guardian editor Alan Rusbridger, but 17 places below the Doctor Who actor David Tennant. Social networking website Facebook comes in at 100. Google chief executive Eric Schmidt – a new entry – is top of this year’s MediaGuardian 100 list.

Pearson Gets Critical Analysis

The Times’ Dan Sabbagh looks at the performance of educational publisher Pearson (parent company of Penguin) and its CEO, Dame Marjorie Scardino, over the last ten years, and wonders if it’s “unreasonable to ask whether it is time for Dame Marjorie to adopt a different strategy.” Especially because even though the focus on publishing has been good from a long-term growth standpoint, “unfortunately, so exciting is the education business that journalists fail utterly to pay any attention to it,” concludes Sabbagh. Ungrateful scribblers prefer instead to concentrate on the rest of the shooting match, which, after ten years’ hard work, looks hardly developed by comparison. Penguin and the businesses clumped around the Financial Times contribute a measly 33 per cent of profits, and the newspaper, which produced £80 million at the top of the last cycle, might manage 20 million pounds this year.

Which makes talk of unloading Penguin all the stronger for Sabbagh. “Penguin might be better off in a union with Bloomsbury or merged into a consumer-orientated media group that would not mind a stable earnings stream to offset the vicissitudes of advertising.”

Pearson Meets Own Expectations

Pearson (parent company of Penguin and the world’s largest educational publisher) published a report from its Annual General Meeting and the results are rather rosy. The company, Reuters reports, said it was trading in line with expectations and that it expects its higher education business sales to grow 3-5 percent with stable margins, and added its schools business was expected to achieve underlying sales growth in the 4-6 percent range with margins improving.

The company also said its professional revenues were expected to be broadly level amid improving margins while Penguin’s margins were continuing to improve. In the Financial Times Group, full-year margins were expected to push into double digits.

Marjorie Scardino, chief executive, said: “We’ve achieved strong growth with a consistent strategy: leading content, services and technology to make it more valuable, international expansion and ongoing efficiency measures. Those advantages, and our solid start to the year, make us confident that 2007 will be another good year for Pearson.”

Pearson Profits Rise

Pearson, the world’s largest education publisher (and parent company of Penguin Books) reported a 19 pct rise in 2006 profits, ahead of market expectations, and said it expects to grow faster than its markets in 2007. Penguin saw sales rise by 5% and operating profit by 10% in 2006, with underlying sales growing by 3% despite what its parent called a “tough consumer publishing market”. Pearson said that its book publishing subsidiary had a “record number of bestsellers for record number of weeks” over the year–Penguin UK had 59 titles in the Nielsen Bookscan‘s top ten bestseller list, up 5 from 2005, keeping them there for 361 weeks, up 42 weeks from 2005; Penguin US had 139 books on The New York Times bestseller list, 10 more than in 2005, and kept them there for 809 weeks overall, up 119 weeks from 2005.

Pearson CEO Marjorie Scardino said: “This is another strong set of results. We have built market-leading businesses and invested consistently in their content, technology and international expansion. That strategy is paying off with sustained growth in sales, margins, earnings and returns, and we expect 2007 to be another good year.”

A Volatile Time in UK Publishing

The Independent’s Saeed Shah analyzes the recent report by Pearson (parent company of Penguin) that their profits will be at its highest in years, leading to a five-year-high in stock prices. But even though rumors still swirl that a private equity company could swoop in and buy the company outright – or even that it will sell its flagship newspaper, the Financial Times – chief executive Marjorie Scardino is holding fast. Scardino can enjoy her time at Pearson, Shah says, because she kept her nerve through the downturn and was brave enough to invest. A decade at the top of one of Britain’s leading companies is an achievement in itself. Scardino seems determined to see through her strategy and bask in its success.

Meanwhile, the Telegraph reports that Brandes Investment Partners, the value investor, has increased its stake in the troubled entertainment retailer HMV. The fund manager, which is based in the US, is now the group’s largest shareholder with 40.8m shares, a 10.15pc stake. Brandes’s investment has been led by fund manager Amelia Morris, who has invested heavily in a number of UK retailers, most notably Marks & Spencer, over the past five years.

Strong Profits for Pearson

Pearson provided its ts regular January trading update today, stating that they continued to perform strongly through the fourth quarter of 2006. Pearson Education sustained its good revenue momentum and achieved further margin improvement, ahead of expectations, as we benefited from our investments in educational testing and technology. The Financial Times added circulation and advertising and Penguin had a good year-end publishing and selling season. Their preliminary results will be announced on February 26th.

Marjorie Scardino, chief executive, said: “A strong all-round performance in our key fourth quarter selling season capped another very good year. All around Pearson, our investments in content and technology are paying off. Those advantages have produced Pearson’s highest ever profits in 2006, and will bolster our future growth.”

Speculation of Pearson Private Equity Buyout

The Scotsman reports that shares in Pearson (parent company of Penguin and the Financial Times) jumped more than 4 percent on Wednesday to their highest price since mid-2002 in hefty volume amid speculation over a private-equity buyout for the world’s largest educational publisher. Details of a report in the weekly The Business magazine, due to be published on Thursday but noted by traders during the afternoon, singled out private-equity firm Kohlberg Kravis Roberts & Co. as a possible bidder.

A source familiar with the matter told Reuters, however, that KKR currently had no plans to bid for Pearson. The private-equity firm declined to comment. Marjorie Scardino, chief executive of Pearson, has previously said any sale of the FT, which recorded a 11% rise in ad revenues for the first nine months of 2006, would happen “over my dead body”, but despite Pearson’s denials that it would consider selling off its prize newspaper asset, Franklin Templeton, one of the FT’s largest stakeholders warned last year that the FT would be in danger unless “tens of millions of pounds a year” was made in profits.