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August 15-31, 2005 Edition
NEW YORK, NY/8/11/05HarperCollins Publishers, Americas second largest book publisher, August 10 reported a 4% increase in sales for the year ended June 30, 2005. Sales increased to $1.32 billion and operating income rose to $164 million. Analysts had been wary that the publisher would show no year-end gains, since sales dropped 6.5% in the third quarter. However, the company managed a turn-around in the fourth quarter, when sales rose more than 7%, almost double the annual increase.
The childrens division contributed heavily to sales, according to HarperCollins CEO Jane Friedman who called this year the year of the childrens book. She cited especially strong sales from the Lemony Snicket series, and authors such as Maurice Sendak and Shel Silverstein.
In June this year, the publisher reorganized its sales team, reducing the number of reps from 16 to nine, and made other cost-cutting moves, presumably aimed at making a better profit showing in fiscal 2006.