The major publishers continue to see strong book sales all over the world in the past three months. This is primarily attributed to bookstores opening again and shoppers being able to browse around and buy things. The sales also include online book sales where Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Chapters Indigo, Thalia, Waterstones and other retailers are back to business.
Harpercollins announced in the latest quarter they generated $546 million, up 19% year over year including a 1% gain from foreign currency exchange rates. Revenue growth was driven by higher consumption trends and contributions from the buyout of Houghton Mifflin Harcourt’s Books and Media segment (HMH). Strong sales in the U.K., and in the Christian and General books categories including The Cellist by Daniel Silva, the series of Bridgerton titles by Julia Quinn and Vanderbilt: The Rise and Fall of an American Dynasty by Anderson Cooper, also contributed to the upside. Digital sales rose 5% year over year and accounted for 21% of Consumer revenues in the reported quarter. Adjusted revenues increased 7% while adjusted EBITDA rose 10%.
Simon & Schuster had a solid first half of 2021 and the good results carried into the third quarter ended August 31, 2021, with sales rising 15% over the comparable period in 2020. Revenue hit $321 million, up from $279 million a year ago, and profits jumped 66%, to $93 million. The children’s division, which had flat sales in the second quarter, led the increase in the third quarter, with sales up 19%. Sales in the international group rose 12% driven by a terrific year in the U.K., where Dave Grohl’s The Storyteller has been a huge hit. Adult sales were up 12%, as It Ends with Us, The Last Thing He Told Me, American Marxism, Peril, and Billy Summers were among the titles that sold well in the quarter. Sales in the distribution group also rose by double digits.
Michael Kozlowski has been writing about audiobooks and e-readers for the past twelve years. His articles have been picked up by major and local news sources and websites such as the CBC, CNET, Engadget, Huffington Post and the New York Times. He Lives in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada.