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Bloomsbury buoyed by early orders from bookshops to avoid Christmas disruption

By PA News

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Publisher Bloomsbury said it was boosted by early orders from retailers (Bloomsbury/PA)

Bloomsbury Publishing hailed record half-year sales and profits as it revealed that retailers are getting books in earlier than usual in a bid to avoid Christmas disruption.

It saw shares rise on Wednesday morning after announcing the positive trading update.

Nigel Newton, chief executive of the business, said it “successfully mitigated print supply chain challenges” over the first half of the year to meet demand.

He highlighted that retailers and online booksellers have “significantly increased stock levels over previous years” to ensure they can trade without disruption over Christmas.

This has helped boost first-half revenues compared to previous years, the company said.

Bloomsbury said its revenues increased by 29% to £100.7 million for the half-year to August 31, against the same period last year.

These are our highest ever first-half sales and profits
Nigel Newton, Bloomsbury chief executive

The Harry Potter publisher highlighted strong performances across both its academic and consumer divisions.

It highlighted bestsellers including Tom Kerridge’s Outdoor Cooking, Piranesi by Susanna Clarke, and A Court Of Silver Flames by Sarah J Maas

Mr Newton added: “These are our highest ever first-half sales and profits.

“These results demonstrate the strength and resilience of our strategy of publishing for both the consumer and academic markets, and our growth of digital revenues.

“Our strong financial position and cash generation give us significant opportunities for further acquisitions and investment in organic growth.”

Bloomsbury announced a 5% increase in its interim dividend payment to 1.34p per share following the update.

Shares in the company were 1.1% higher at 356p in early trading on Wednesday.

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