Penguin eBook Sales More than Double During 2011, "Not There Yet" With a Library Business Model
From The Guardian:
Pearson has reported a 72% surge in pre-tax profits to £1.15bn for 2011, with ebook sales at Penguin more than doubling and profits at FT Group, home to the Financial Times, up by about a quarter.
Total revenues across the group, which includes book publisher Penguin and educational holdings, grew 4% to £5.9bn. Within this total digital revenues grew 18% to £2bn to account for a third of all sales.
Penguin reported a revenue decline of 1%, although on an underlying basis growth was 1%, to £1.05bn. Adjusted operating profits grew 5%, or 8% on an underlying basis, to £111m.
Penguin also reported a massive increase in digital book sales, up 106% year-on-year, with ebooks accounting for 12% of total revenues and 20% in the US market.
In 2010, ebooks accounted for 6% of total Penguin revenues.
Ebooks accounted for 12% of Penguin revenues worldwide in 2011 – up from 6% in 2010 – which are expected to increase significantly again this year. Big Penguin sellers were cookbooks by celebrity chef Jamie Oliver and Kathryn Stockett’s The Help.
Asked about the two hot-button issues of the moments, library e-book lending and Amazon, [Penguin Group USA CEO David] Shanks said, Penguin continues to talk to the ALA and libraries and hopes to work out a business model that is acceptable to all parties, but admitted “we are not there yet.” As for Amazon, Shanks said the entire market is helped by maintaining as many accounts and channels as possible and that is Penguin’s overall goal. “Amazon is a very important customer and someone we like to have a good relationship with,” Shanks said.
About Gary Price
Gary Price (email@example.com) is a librarian, writer, consultant, and frequent conference speaker based in the Washington D.C. metro area. He earned his MLIS degree from Wayne State University in Detroit. Price has won several awards including the SLA Innovations in Technology Award and Alumnus of the Year from the Wayne St. University Library and Information Science Program. From 2006-2009 he was Director of Online Information Services at Ask.com.