MAIN NEWS HEADLINES
November 9 – November 16, 2006 Edition
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In Third Quarter
TORONTO, ONTARIO/11/2/06—Total revenues for Harlequin Enterprises, the book publishing arm of Torstar Corporation, fell 13% in the third quarter of 2006 to C$118.8 million to C$366.2. Operating profits fell 42% to C$14.4 million. The declines are largely attributed to the strengthening of the Canadian dollar against the U.S. dollar. North American retail sales decreased while UK markets were up.
Sales declined C$3.7 million in the quarter, excluding currency fluctuations, and earnings dropped by C$1.2 million.
During the first nine months, revenues were down 11% to C$351.8 million, and earnings dived 45% to C$39.7 million. Earlier this year Harlequin cut 70 jobs mainly in its North American division to reduce corporate costs, and more layoffs were expected before the end of the year.
The currency differences are expected to keep revenues and profits down in the fourth quarter.
In reporting third quarter results, Torstar said its operating results were stable year over year excluding the impact of foreign exchange. Torstar’s company-wide net income was down $16.0 million from $23.7 million in the third quarter of 2005 to $7.7 million in the third quarter of 2006.
Robert Prichard, Torstar’s President and Chief Executive Officer, said “Harlequin was down slightly due to the continuing impact of the disruption of distribution in the Direct-to-Consumer division in the spring.” “During the quarter, we have taken significant steps to strengthen our businesses,” he said. The continued currency fluctuations are expected to impact Harlequin’s performance in the fourth quarter
Harlequin Enterprises Limited is the global leader in series romance and one of the world’s leading publishers of women’s fiction, with titles issued worldwide in 25 languages and sold in 94 international markets. The company produces over 115 titles monthly and publishes more than 1,300 authors from around the world. Harlequin Enterprises Limited is a wholly owned subsidiary of Torstar Corporation, a broadly based media company listed on the Toronto Stock Exchange (TS.nv.b). Harlequin’s Web site is located at http://www.eHarlequin.com. Harlequin has offices in 18 countries including Toronto, New York and London. For more information please visit http://www.eHarlequin.com or press.eHarlequin.com.