Harry and Hancock work Bloomsbury magic
Thursday 31 March 2005
Demand for the latest Harry Potter book, the sixth instalment in the boy wizard series, has been "substantially higher" than Bloomsbury had anticipated, prompting the publishing house to raise its profit target for 2005.
Shares in the group set a new record after it predicted profits before tax and goodwill would be at least £20m, 10 per cent higher than it had guided analysts to expect. Its shares rose 19p to 325p.
Nigel Newton, the chairman, said the company had received "higher-than-expected advance sales" since it had announced the novel's release date in December. "We're sufficiently convinced [of the strength of demand] that we've pushed the forecasts up," he said. Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince will be published at midnight on 16 July.
Despite the phenomenal success of JK Rowling's Harry Potter books, Bloomsbury has resisted the temptation to rely on the wizard's magic and has expanded its adult and reference publishing arms. It has also expanded into Germany and strengthened its presence in the US.
Mr Newton said progress in 2005 would come "across the board", predicting a novel from one of its new authors, Peter Prince, would be a big seller, as would a non-fiction title about "men and food" by William Leith. His comments came as Bloomsbury reported a 19 per cent rise in pre-tax profits to £16.2m. Excluding goodwill amortisation and an exceptional gain from the sale of a freehold warehouse, profits rose 7 per cent to £16.4m.
The group had three number one best-sellers in each of its three markets: with Susanna Clarke's Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell in the US; The Two of Us, a book about John Thaw by his widow, Sheila Hancock, in the UK; and Schott's Original Miscellany in Germany. "This showed Bloomsbury has emerged as a fully fledged international publisher for the first time," Mr Newton said.
Bloomsbury is expanding the breadth of its children's publishing division, with a push into the pre-school market. It intends to add "critical mass" to its children's division by targeting strategic acquisitions.
- 2 California man brutally beat 82-year-old Sikh grandfather he mistook for 'one of those people'
- 3 School kitchen manager 'fired from Colorado school for giving hungry students free lunches'
- 4 Amy Schumer: 'I'm 160lbs and can catch a d**k any time I want'
- 5 Isis executes three gay men by dangling them from top of 100ft building and letting go
Amber Peat: Body found in search for missing 13-year-old who left house after argument with her parents
School kitchen manager 'fired from Colorado school for giving hungry students free lunches'
Amy Schumer: 'I'm 160lbs and can catch a d**k any time I want'
Isis executes three gay men by dangling them from top of 100ft building and letting go
Alton Towers crash: Four guests seriously injured as Smiler ride carriages collide
Thousands of teenage girls enduring debilitating illnesses after routine school cancer vaccination
Migrants in Kos: Photos show real tragedy after Brits abroad complain of 'awkward' holidays
Michael Gove determined to scrap the Human Rights Act – even if Scotland retains it
Threat to scrap Human Rights Act could see UK follow Nazi example, warns UN official
Church of England 'one generation away from extinction' after dramatic loss of followers
Russian 'aggression' sees Poland rearm its military as minister warns: 'We must be ready'
iJobs Money & Business
£30000 - £35000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: The UK's fastest growing, multi...
£70000 - £90000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A Financial Reporting Manager i...
£23000 - £25000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: They win lots of awards for the...
£13500 - £20000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This nationwide enforcement com...