A strong performance from Scholastic’s International division, including the UK, helped the company increase sales 3% in the third quarter.
For the quarter ending 28th February revenues were $344.7m (£244.4m), compared to $336.2m (£238.4m) the previous year, an increase of 3% versus the prior year period.
The international division experienced growth in all major markets - UK, Canada, Australia/New Zealand and Asia - so revenues were up 8% to $83.6m (£59.3m). In the UK the key releases were Tom Gates: Epic Adventure (kind of) and Tom Gates: Family, Friends and Furry Creatures by Liz Pinchon, as well as The Ugly Five and Zog and the Flying Doctors by Julia Donaldson and Axel Scheffler.
The operating loss from continuing operations was $23.7m (£16.8m), a 4% improvement over the prior year period’s operating loss of $24.7m (£17.5), but the company reported a net loss of $49.2m (£35m) in the most recent quarter, up from $15.4m (£10.9m) a year ago.
Richard Robinson, chairman, president and c.e.o., said: “Our third quarter results were solidly on track and we have now raised our full-year 2018 earnings-per-share outlook to reflect the part year benefit of recent tax reform. Although the third quarter loss reflects planned higher levels of investment, all reporting segments show top-line growth including strong trade publishing sales across all international markets.”
In the US, revenues from the children’s book publishing and distribution division were up by $0.4m (£0.3m), and book fair sales grew $2m (£1.4m). Revenues from book clubs declined by $2.6m (£1.8m).
For the first nine months of the year, revenue was $1.132bn (£0.8bn), a decrease of 9% from the year before, but the decline is mainly due to the significant sales of Harry Potter and the Cursed Child and Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them: The Original Screenplay in the US, Canada and export markets in the prior year.