Groupe Lexis Media acquires 12 Transcontinental Media publications

Lexis MediaGroupe Lexis Media has acquired 12 of Transcontinental Inc.‘s publications, as well as their related web properties, with 75 employees of these various publications and 16 employees from TC Media’s Production team being transferred to the buyer. With the completion of this transaction, 60% of the publications included in the sale process of TC Media’s local and regional newspapers in Quebec and Ontario, launched in April 2017, are now in the hands of local owners. The terms of the transaction were not disclosed.

Transcontinental is Canada’s largest printer with operations in print, flexible packaging, publishing and digital media and has more than 7,000 employees in Canada and the United States, and revenues of C$2.0 billion in 2016. Their mission is to create products and services that allow businesses to attract, reach and retain their target customers.

The newspapers acquired by Groupe Lexis Media are: Le Citoyen Rouyn-Noranda, Le Citoyen de la Vallee-de-l’Or, L’Echo Abitibien and La Frontiere, distributed in Abitibi-Temiscamingue; L’Action D’Autray, L’Action – Wednesday Edition, L’Action – Weekend Edition, L’Express Montcalm and Hebdo Rive-Nord, in Lanaudiere; Le Bulletin, La Petite-Nation and La Revue, in Outaouais.

Mr. Frederic Couture, President of Groupe Lexis Media, said: “Since its beginnings, Lexis Media has carved out a prominent position for itself in the media industry by bringing on a passionate editorial team and collaborators, and highly professional sales representatives. We intend to carry on this tradition as we confidently embark on this new phase of our development.”

Canada, Montreal & St-Bruno-de-Montarville, Quebec

 

Reed Elsevier reports growth in the 12 months to 31 December 2012

Reed Elsevier reports growth in revenue, operating profit and earnings in the twelve months to 31 December 2012.Reed Elsevier

Full details of results

Financial highlights

  • Underlying revenue growth +4% (+3% excluding biennial exhibition cycling) to £6,116m/€7,523m
  • Underlying adjusted operating profit growth +6% to £1,713m/€2,107m
  • Adjusted EPS +7% to 50.1p for Reed Elsevier PLC; +14% to €0.95 for Reed Elsevier NV
  • Reported EPS +42% to 46.0p for Reed Elsevier PLC; +53% to €0.90 for Reed Elsevier NV
  • Full year dividend +7% to 23.0p for Reed Elsevier PLC; +7% to €0.467 for Reed Elsevier NV
  • Return on invested capital up by 0.7 percentage points to 11.9%
  • Net debt £0.3bn lower at £3.1bn; 2.2x EBITDA pensions and lease adjusted (1.7x unadjusted)

Operational highlights

  • Revenue growth driven by volume growth, new products, and expansion in high growth markets
  • Profitability gains driven by process innovation and portfolio development
  • All five business areas contributed to underlying revenue and profit growth
  • Continued improvement in revenue mix by format, geography, and type
  • Accelerated portfolio reshaping; gross proceeds from disposal of non-core businesses £242m
  • £250m of share buybacks completed in 2012
  • £100m of share buybacks completed in 2013 YTD; further £300m to be deployed in remainder of 2013

Commenting on the results, Chief Executive Officer, Erik Engstrom, commented:

“In 2012 we made good progress on our strategy to systematically transform our business into a professional information solutions provider that combines content & data with analytics & technology in global platforms. We continued to do this primarily through organic development, with acquisitions limited to small content and data assets across markets and assets in high growth geographies. We also accelerated the evolution of our portfolio by disposing of businesses that no longer fit our strategy, using the proceeds to buy back shares. As a result of these actions we are continuing to improve the quality of our earnings, to deliver more predictable revenues, a higher growth profile, and improving returns.

By the end of 2012 approximately 80% of our revenues were in our targeted formats of electronic and face to face, which generated average underlying revenue growth rates of +5-7%. Although the outlook for the macro environment, and its impact on our customer markets, is mixed, we have entered 2013 with positive momentum, and expect another year of underlying revenue, profit, and earnings growth.”

UK, London & The Netherlands, Amsterdam

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Pearson announces preliminary results for the year ending 31 December 2012

Pearson has announced preliminary results for the year ending 31 December 2012.se_header_logo_pearson

Full details of preliminary results

Financial highlights

  • Sales up 5% at CER to £6.1bn (with digital and services businesses contributing 50% of sales)
  • Adjusted operating profit 1% higher at £936m
  • Adjusted EPS of 84.2p (86.5p in 2011)
  • Operating cash flow of £788m (£983m in 2011)
  • Return on invested capital of 9.1% (9.1% in 2011)
  • Dividend raised 7% to 45.0p.

Market conditions and industry change

  • Market conditions generally weak in developed world and for print publishing businesses; generally strong in emerging economies and for digital and services businesses.
  • Continuing structural change in education funding, retail channels, consumer behaviour and content business models.
  • Considerable growth opportunity in education driven by rapidly-growing global middle class, adoption of learning technologies, the connection between education and career prospects and increasing consumer spend, especially in emerging economies.

Strong competitive performance

  • North American Education revenues up 2% in a year when US School and Higher Education publishing revenues declined by 10% for the industry as a whole.
  • International Education revenues up 13% with emerging market revenues up 25%.
  • FT Group revenues up 4% with the Financial Times’ total paid print and online circulation up to 602,000; digital subscriptions exceed print circulation for the first time.
  • Penguin revenues up 1%, with strong publishing performance and eBooks now 17% of sales.

Accelerated shift to digital & services and to fast-growing economies

  • Pearson announces gross restructuring costs of approximately £150m in 2013 (£100m net of cost savings achieved in the year), focused on:
  1. significantly accelerating the shift of Pearson’s education businesses towards fast-growing economies and digital and services businesses;
  2. separating Penguin activities from Pearson central services and operations in preparation for the merger of Penguin and Random House.

Restructuring expected to generate annual cost savings of approximately £100m in 2014.

  • In 2014, £100m of cost savings to be reinvested in organic development of fast-growing education markets and categories and further restructuring, including the Penguin Random House integration.
  • From 2015, restructuring programme expected to produce faster growth, improving margins and stronger cash generation.

Outlook

·      Pearson expects tough trading conditions and structural industry change to continue in 2013.

·      Excluding restructuring costs and including Penguin for the full year, Pearson expects to achieve 2013 operating profit and adjusted EPS broadly level with 2012.

John Fallon, chief executive, said: “Pearson has a sound, successful strategy: now we are significantly accelerating its implementation. Trading conditions are tough and structural changes mean many of our traditional publishing activities are under pressure. But the underlying demand for effective education remains immensely powerful and our developing world and digital services businesses have real scale and momentum. The restructuring of the company that we are announcing today is designed to strengthen dramatically Pearson’s position in digital education services and in our most important markets for the future – and to enable us to capture the once-in-a-generation opportunity that comes with being the world’s leading learning company.”

UK, London

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Centaur Media plc – half year results for the six months ended 31 December 2012

centaurCentaur Media plc, the business information, events and marketing services group, has published its half year results for the six months ended 31 December 2012.

Highlights below

Full report here

Highlights

  • Digital and events revenues now account for 39% and 29% of reported revenue respectively (H1 2012: 32% and 22% respectively)
  • Print revenue contribution reduced to 31% (H1 2012: 45%) of reported revenues
  • Reported revenue up 14% to £30.4 million
  • Deferred revenues up 30% to £15.1million
  • Adjusted EBITDA up 81% to £2.9 million
  • Adjusted EBITDA margins increased to 10%
  • Interim dividend up 10% to 0.825p

Fusion sold  Econsultancy.com Limited to Centaur in July last year. According to the announcement, the business is performing well.

UK, London

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Informa plc – Full year results for the Year Ended 31 December 2012

informa2Informa plc have announced full year results for the Year Ended 31 December 2012.

Key highlights below

Full report here

Highlights

  • Academic publishing unit saw a 2.4 per cent increase in revenues
  • Sales dropped 4.4 per cent at the business information unit
  • Sales dropped 3% at the events and training unit
  • Total revenues £1232.5 million, a drop of 3.4%
  • Emerging market growth – now 18% of Group revenue (2011: 14%)
  • Core revenue stream – 67% of publishing revenues from subscriptions
  • Digital revenue strew – 74% of publishing revenues fully digitised
  • Diluted EPS 15p, a drop of 20%
  • Adjusted diluted EPS 40.7p, up 7.7%
  • Full year dividend 18.5p, up 10.1%
  • Profit before tax £67 million, a drop of 24.4%
  • Adjusted operating profit of £349.7 million, up 4.0%
  • Adjusted operating margin of 28.4%
  • Adjusted profit before tax of £317.4 million, up 7.3%
  • Statutory profit after tax of £90.7 million
  • Operating cash flow £329 million, up 5.7%
  • Balance sheet  – net debt/EBITDA ratio of 2.1 times

Peter Rigby, Chief Executive, said:

“Informa has performed strongly once again in 2012, delivering earnings ahead of market expectations and strong cashflow, despite what have remained very challenging market conditions. This is testament to the resilience of our businesses, underpinned by strong brands, leading market positions, digital excellence and a growing presence in emerging markets. Our performance has enabled us to keep investing in our business, while maintaining our progressive dividend policy, with 10.1% growth in the total payout in 2012, underlining our commitment to delivering attractive returns to our shareholders.

Commenting on acquisitions and disposals, Peter Rigby said:

We were very proactive in managing our portfolio in 2012. This was evident through the acquisitions of Zephyr, which bolstered our digital subscription base, and MMPI, which expanded our portfolio of large exhibitions, as well as the disposals of Robbins Gioia and some small European local language Conference businesses. Internally, our focus on operating excellence also led us to proactively exit a number of lower quality publishing products and events, cutting out over £25m of revenue. This has impacted top-line growth trends but leaves the group in a stronger position going forward, with a higher underlying quality of earnings.

UK, London

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Management buyout of Adria Media Slovenia

adria media ljubljanaAdria Media Holding GmbH, an Austrian publishing company and 50:50 joint venture between Sanoma Magazines International and Gruner+Jahr,  has sold its entire 75% stake in Adria Media Ljubljana d.o.o. to the management of the company.

After this transaction, Adria Media Holding GmbH still holds controlling stakes in Adria Media Zagreb d.o.o. and Adria Media Serbia d.o.o.

Slovenia, Ljubljana

 

Centaur Media PLC – half year trading update

Centaur Media plccentaur, the business information, events and marketing services group, has issued a trading update for the six months to 31 December 2012.

The Group expects to report results in line with the Board’s expectations, with reported revenues 14% ahead of the same period last year and EBITDA margins increased to 10% from 6%. Underlying revenues across the Group as a whole declined by 3%.

The Group has continued to maintain good momentum in improving its revenue mix. Digital and events revenues now account for 39% and 28% respectively of total Group revenues, up from 32% and 22% in the same period last year. Over the same period, the share of total Group revenues generated in print format has reduced, as expected, to 31% from 45%.

The improving mix of revenues in favour of events and paid-for content has also increased levels of visibility into the second half of the financial year.  Deferred revenues at 31 December 2012 were approximately £15m, 30% ahead of the same period last year.

Growth in underlying revenues across the Business Information and Exhibitions divisions has been offset by weaker revenues across the Business Publishing financial and marketing communities. Reported revenues across the Business Information division are substantially up, reflecting the impact of recent acquisitions, despite the deferral of some corporate training engagements into H2.

Net debt at 31 December 2012 was £24.5m, representing leverage of approximately two times. The Group’s earnings and cash flows continue to be weighted towards the second half of the financial year and leverage is expected to fall rapidly in the next six months.

As anticipated, the Group will report exceptional costs for the first six months of the year related to reorganisation costs, IFRS3 earn-out charges and acquisitions.

Geoff Wilmot, Chief Executive, said:

“We have maintained momentum in improving the quality of our portfolio of activities as we continue to grow revenues from digital and events. We continue to focus on increasing margins and we have a strong pipeline of new product development initiatives which positions us well to deliver further growth in the medium term.

“We anticipate trading to be in line with our expectations for the current financial year, although the second half of our financial year continues to account for the large majority of our earnings.”

The Group expects to release its half yearly earnings report on 20 February 2013.

UK, London

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