According to WH Smith, this year, the UK book market is on track again, thanks to Britney Spears’ memoir and some incredible crime novels by Richard Osman. The main contributors to the rise are due to the widespread book sales and travel rebound, which further contributed to a 75% increase in pre-tax profits to £110m in the year to August 31. Meanwhile, the sales rose by 28% to £1.8bn
WH Smith’s chief executive, Carl Cowling, mentioned how there were several books that boosted the sales. This included titles like a new cookbook from Jamie Oliver, The Last Devil to Die, Spears’ The Woman in Me and Osman’s fourth crime novel. “It’s not going to be up by much, but it’s a good robust market,” he said.
Cowling also mentioned how WH Smith was doing better with cheaper books for children with specialist bookshops in UK airports. In fact, the travel resumption after lockdown boosted the book sales, with total sales up by 48%. For the train stations, the sales boost was 15%.
Furthermore, Cowling talked about how WH Smith’s efforts to broaden its ranges and bring health and beauty products along with technology served as added support. One of the main contributors to its growth was the sales from overseas, where it doubled in areas like WH Smith’s European and international travel stores in Belgium, Italy, Spain, Sweden, etc. The sales for North America grew by 32% to become the second-largest division for the group after the UK. For such responses, about 50 North American stores are likely to open in the upcoming year. Read more here.