Solid business - paying up
Bastei Lübbe publishes financial statements for the 2018/19 fiscal year
- Strong 4th quarter in the Book and Games segments
- Back in the black - EBIT at EUR 2.7 million
- Outlook: targeted growth-investments
Cologne, 11 July 2019 - The publishing house Bastei Lübbe AG (ISIN DE000A1X3YY0) publishes its audited financial statements for the 2018/2019 fiscal year. According to these, group sales amounted to EUR 94.9 million after EUR 140.2 million in the previous year. The decline is mainly due to the sale of the majority interest in BuchPartner.
Overall, the publishing divisions performed solidly and, in the fourth quarter, even better than expected. Fiction, however, fell short of expectations, while LYX and Audio convinced with higher than expected sales. The total sales contribution of the 'Books' segment amounted to EUR 75.8 million (previous year EUR 84.7 million). The 'Games' segment, with Daedalic, contributed sales of EUR 9.1 million (previous year: EUR 11.0 million for 'Digital'). In the 'Novel Booklets' division, stable sales of EUR 10.0 million (previous year: EUR 9.8 million) were achieved.
'After a bad previous year, we cleaned up considerably and disposed of activities that no longer fit into our portfolio for economic or strategic reasons. This related to the investments oolipo, Beam Shop and BookRix. The concentration on the core business allows lean structures and processes', says Carel Halff, CEO of Bastei Lübbe AG.
On the earnings side, the company was back in the black in the year under review. Due to higher than expected group sales and lower restructuring costs, the group EBIT amounted to a pleasing EUR 2.7 million (previous year/adjusted: EUR -18.4 million).
'The efficiency program implemented resulted in the loss of 50 jobs. The organisation of the company into five independently operating publishing divisions - Fiction/Non-Fiction Books, Children's-/Youth Books, LYX, Audio, and Novel Booklets - increases the proximity to the reader and the market,' adds Carel Halff.
After interest payments and income taxes, the Bastei Lübbe Group posted a net gain for the period of EUR 0.9 million, compared with a net loss of EUR -16.4 million in the previous year. Of this amount, EUR 0.7 million is attributable to the shareholders of Bastei Lübbe AG after EUR -12.8 million in the previous year. This results in earnings per share of EUR 0.05 in the 2018/2019 reporting year compared with EUR -0.97 in the 2017/2018 reporting year.
Net debt was reduced by 41%. As of March 31, 2019, it amounted to EUR 17.8 million compared with EUR 30.1 million in the previous year. This is mainly due to the positive development in the fourth quarter of the financial year and prudent liquidity planning.
Profitable growth - efficient organization
After the focus last year was on implementing the efficiency programme and streamlining structures, the next few years will see the company setting the course for profitable growth.
In the current financial year, big names such as Rebecca Gablé, Petra Hülsmann, Mona Kasten and Jeff Kinney are outdoing our publishing programmes. These names have inspired millions of readers for years and represent the many hundreds of novelties that are found, developed and published every year in the divisions and imprints. In their thematic breadth and diversity, they illustrate the creative face of the publishing group and thus ensure its long-term success.
Bastei Lübbe will significantly expand its position in the coming years through targeted investments in authors. As an independent company, Bastei Lübbe is one of the most popular addresses for debuts and innovations.
Audio continues to benefit from the general market trend towards digital audio books in the current financial year.
By implementing efficiency enhancement measures and successfully streamlining the portfolio, the Management Board expects the earnings situation to improve significantly.
For the financial year 2019/20, the Management Board therefore expects group sales between EUR 85 and 87 million and an EBIT between EUR 3.5 and 5.3 million.
The Annual Report 2018/2019 of Bastei Lübbe AG is available on the Internet at https://www.luebbe.com/en/investor-relations/financial-reports.
About Bastei Lübbe AG:
Bastei Lübbe AG is a German publishing house with headquarters in Cologne specialised in the publication of books, audio books and e-books with fiction and popular science content. The company's core business also includes the periodically published puzzle magazines and novel magazines. With its total of twelve publishing houses and imprints, the Bastei Lübbe group of companies currently offers around 3,600 titles in the areas of fiction, non-fiction as well as books for children and young adults. In the growing segment of hardcover fiction books, the company has been one of the market leaders in Germany for many years. At the same time, Bastei Lübbe is an engine for innovation in the area of digital media and distribution channels, among other things by the production of thousands of audio and eBooks. This includes the stake in the renowned game publisher 'Daedalic Entertainment'.
With annual sales of approx. EUR 95 million (financial year 2018/2019), Bastei Lübbe AG is one of the largest medium-sized publishing companies in Germany. The shares of the company have been listed in the Prime Standard segment on the Frankfurt stock exchange (GSIN A1X3YY, ISIN DE000A1X3YY0) since 2013. Further information is available at www.luebbe.com.
Contact Bastei Lübbe AG:
Head of Press and Public Relations
Tel.: +49 221 82 00 28 50
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