HARPERCOLLINS, the book publisher owned by News Corporation, enjoyed a boost in turnover thanks to sales of e-books and bestsellers such as Hilary Mantel’s award-winning novel, Bring Up the Bodies.
Yet while turnover at the Glasgow-headquartered firm rose 4 per cent to £263.5 million, the firm saw its profits slip from £14.3m to £11.5m in the year to the end of June 2012 due to an “economically challenged environment”, according to accounts published at Companies House.
The company said it increased its market share by 10 per cent, while sales of e-books grew 250 per cent.
It published 56 bestsellers, as measured by the Sunday Times, including Dare to Dream by boy band One Direction, and Dance with Dragons by George RR Martin. The firm also launched its free online dictionary, Collins.dictionary.com, during the year.
In addition to its London and Glasgow offices, the publisher has operations in Australia, New Zealand, Canada and India.
HarperCollins is part of the publishing division of News Corp, which also includes newspapers the Sun and the Times. The division was struck by write-downs of around $2 billion (£1.3bn) last year, in part due to damage inflicted on its business by the closure of the News of the World and the phone hacking scandal. The division is in the process of being split from owner Rupert Murdoch’s TV and broadcast business.
The company, founded in Glasgow in 1819, also publishes the works of detective novelist Agatha Christie, and fantasy fiction writers CS Lewis and JRR Tolkein, whose books are being discovered by a new audience thanks to big screen adaptations.
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