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HarperCollins Has Large Drop in Revenue; Parent NewsCorp Posts Billon ...

Yesterday NewsCorp, Rupert Murdoch's media empire, posted a $6.4 Billion loss .  NewsCorp indicated that it would be instituting across the board staff cuts.  HarperCollins had its second consecutive losing quarter with fiscal year earnings down 75%.   Given the disappointing results at HarperCollins and the overall decline in fortune at NewsCorp, Harper's parent company, I think it's safe to say that there will be layoffs at HarperCollins but layoffs alone can't account for a 75% drop in fiscal year earnings on a 16% decline in revenue. 

Jane Litte is the founder of Dear Author, a lawyer, and a lover of pencil skirts. She self publishes NA and contemporaries (and publishes with Berkley and Montlake) and spends her downtime reading romances and writing about them. Her TBR pile is much larger than the one shown in the picture and not as pretty. You can reach Jane by email at jane @ dearauthor dot com


  1. Jessica G.
    Feb 06, 2009 @ 08:57:55

    I wonder if one of the pockets that performed well was ebooks…

  2. Sherry Thomas
    Feb 06, 2009 @ 11:41:08

    Good Lord. On what books is HarperCollins losing all that dough? Did they have any recent big deals that turned out to be duds?

  3. Sherry Thomas
    Feb 06, 2009 @ 11:56:33

    My bad. HC is still profitable. Just less profitable.

  4. Ann Bruce
    Feb 06, 2009 @ 13:08:31

    Murdoch gets no sympathy from me. He is, after all, responsible for FAUX News and 8 years of GWB.

  5. Ann Bruce
    Feb 06, 2009 @ 13:13:13

    @Sherry Thomas: HC said their FOC is too high, so they’re not attributing it to inflated advances that didn’t earn out.

  6. SonomaLass
    Feb 06, 2009 @ 15:22:35

    I just bought an HC book yesterday. Does that mean I’m part of the solution, not part of the problem???

  7. Michelle
    Feb 06, 2009 @ 15:35:53

    What does “FOC” stand for?

  8. Ann Bruce
    Feb 06, 2009 @ 17:14:07

    Sorry about the acronym.

    FOC = fixed operating costs

  9. Jane
    Feb 06, 2009 @ 17:20:57

    @Ann Bruce Do you think that FOC is really responsible for two dismal quarters?

  10. Ann Bruce
    Feb 06, 2009 @ 17:49:01

    I was echoing HC’s claims.

    I have my own theory about why so many companies performed dismally in the last year or so–and so far it’s been proven as company after company announce their financial results. There’s a reason why companies like XOM and Apple do well even in a downturn while their competitors flounder.

    EDITED because of poor grammar.

  11. Jane
    Feb 06, 2009 @ 19:19:37

    @Ann Bruce Who is XOM?

  12. Evangeline
    Feb 06, 2009 @ 19:20:55

    @Ann Bruce: Care to share the theory? I’ve grown quite interested in economics and the financial sector since the Wall Street meltdown.

  13. joanne
    Feb 06, 2009 @ 22:12:56

    XOM is Exxon Mobile on the NYSE.
    They perform well because I don’t have stock. *sigh*

  14. Ann Bruce
    Feb 09, 2009 @ 09:49:28

    @Jane: Sorry. I usually cut myself off from the Internet on weekends and couldn’t get to your question earlier, but Joanne is correct. XOM is ExxonMobil.

    @Evangeline: I make it a point to never give out stock tips or specific financial advice because if people act upon them and lose money, it can get nasty. But, basically, I like companies with low to no debt, large cash positions, a certain price-to-earnings ratio, and decent dividends. I think that’s general enough without getting me into trouble.

  15. The Not-so-deep Thoughts » Boy, That Didn’t Take Long
    Feb 10, 2009 @ 23:56:41

    […] the people who saw my mention of ExxonMobil at Dear Author and felt compelled to send me e-mails to accuse me of being (1) a greedy capitalist and (2) immoral […]

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