Lagardere reported third quarter sales in brief, with the publishing division’s “performance dented by a drop in sales of the Stephenie Meyer saga, and by a delay of a few weeks in delivering new secondary school textbooks in France.” They note that results are also lower “due to the non-recurrence of the sale of the international rights to the Twilight saga.”
With sales of 634 million euros this quarter, by our count that’s down approximately 50 million euros or over 7 percent from 684.6 million euros a year ago. (They don’t formally break out third quarter sales.) Besides the difficult Twilight comps, this year’s quarterly number is also below the company’s performance for the same period in 2008 and 2007, about even with 2006. With sales of 1.609 billion euros over the past three quarters, they are down 5 percent compared to a year ago. The company notes they are ahead of the same point in 2008–though they are also behind where they were at this point in 2007.
eBook sales in the US were 9 percent of revenues for the first nine months of 2010. The company expects “revenue trends should therefore improve slightly in the fourth quarter” in comparison to a year ago, when the Stephenie Meyer sales had already started to slow.