Global sales at HarperCollins fell by 3% in the first quarter from $418m the year before to $410 as parent company News Corp recorded a 7% decline.
For the fiscal period ending 30th September EBITDA was also down to $49m from $68m, a 28% decrease. Figures for HarperCollins UK were not broken out.
News Corp said the decline was primarily due to falling sales of Girl, Wash Your Face by Rachel Hollis, The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas and The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck by Mark Manson.
It reported: “Digital sales declined 5% compared to the prior year, primarily due to the lower overall sales, and represented 22% of Consumer revenues for the quarter. Segment EBITDA for the quarter declined $19 million, or 28%, from the prior year, primarily due to the different mix of titles.”
At NewsCorp, the company reported total revenues of $2.34bn, 7% lower than the $2.52bn recorded the prior year.
It said there had been “a difficult prior year comparison at the Book Publishing segment”, which saw a 4% increase in the same period of 2018. That 2018 period saw higher sales in general, children’s and Christian publishing, including the success of frontlist titles such as Hollis, The Other Woman by Daniel Silva and The Russia Hoax by Gregg Jarrett, alongside backlist stars Thomas and Manson.