Connect Books sales up 12% in latest trading update

Connect Books sales up 12% in latest trading update

Connect Books saw a 12% year-on-year rise for the 45-week period to 15th July 2017, with strong sales in UK and Wordery offsetting weaker sales in libraries.

The Connect Group released a trading update this morning (24th July), revealing that total group revenues decreased 1.3% to £1,497.5m compared to the same period last year, as a result of the decline of newspaper and magazine sales. Total revenue at the news and media part of the business was down 4.1% to £1,125.8m in 2017.

Meanwhile, total revenue at Connect's book business, which includes wholesaler Bertrams, online retailer Wordery and academic library supplier Dawson Books, was up 12% to £189.7m.  

The company said it expects the book business to continue to perform strongly, after Dawson Books was awarded an accreditation to supply print books, e-books, standing orders and related materials to HE institutions, earlier this month. The framework agreement takes effect from 1st August 2017 for a minimum of two years.

Connect Books' Norwich headquarters has recently installed new automated packing technology which is contributing to efficiency savings that will help to mitigate future increases in the National Living Wage, the company has said.

The group has also maintained progress with key initiatives in its core markets including Parcel Freight, which has seen revenue increase by 4% to £157.3m, and Pass My Parcel, which has seen the number of parcels handled increase 149% on the same period last year

Further, the sale of the company's Education and Care division for a cash consideration of £56.6m earlier this year has been described as a “milestone” in the Group’s strategy to focus on future investment on core operations.