Bastei Lübbe AG publishes 9-month results for 2014/2015 Transition year with digital investments and solid results

Bastei Lübbe AG / Key word(s): Quarter Results

2015-02-13 / 08:00

Bastei Lübbe AG publishes 9-month results for 2014/2015

Transition year with digital investments and solid results

- Group revenues increase to EUR86.8 million (previous year: EUR85.2 million).

- Consolidated EBIT, due to special items, amounts to EUR9.4 million (previous year: EUR11.7 million).

- Digital growth strategy makes great progress

Cologne, Germany, 13 February 2015 - Bastei Lübbe AG, a company listed in the Prime Standard of the Frankfurt Stock Exchange (ISIN DE000A1X3YY0), has today published its 9-month report for 2014/2015. In the period from 1 April to 31 December 2014, the Cologne-based media company achieved a turnover of EUR86.8 million, following EUR85.2 million in the previous year. Compared to the same period of the previous year, consolidated revenue grew by EUR1.6 million, or 1.9 per cent. This allowed the company to balance out the loss in revenue from the first six months of the current financial year. "We have always stressed that this was a transition year for us on the way to becoming an international digital multimedia corporation. We succeeded in maintaining the digital growth rate and, at the same time, presenting solid results," explains Thomas Schierack, CEO of Bastei Lübbe AG.

Earnings before interest and taxes (EBIT) amounted to EUR9.4 million in the reporting period and were therefore slightly lower than the level of the previous year, EUR11.7 million. The deviation in consolidated EBIT compared to the previous year is essentially due to a few special items. Due to involvement in new projects, write-offs increased by around EUR1 million, including a value adjustment to match the "prepaid author royalties holdings" of EUR0.8 million as well as a special payment to the artists' social security fund amounting to EUR0.5 million, of which EUR0.4 million is allotted to the same period in the previous year. Period earnings after taxes during the reporting period added up to EUR5.1 million, compared to EUR7.2 million in the previous year.

The balance sheet total rose to EUR129.1 million as of the cut-off date of 31 December 2014, following EUR107.6 million as of 31 March 2014. This increase of EUR21.5 million is predominantly the result of the incorporation and consolidation of Daedalic Entertainment GmbH and BookRix GmbH & Co. KG, both acquired in 2014, and the founding of BEAM GmbH, as well as a significant rise in short-term trade receivables at the holding company from EUR13.6 million to EUR26.7 million.

The equity share that can be allotted to the holding company's partners rose to EUR52.9 million as of 31 December2014 (31 March 2014: EUR51.5 million). Including the equity shares of external partners, the equity ratio added up to 43.0 per cent as of 31 December 2014, following the 47.9 per cent as of 31 March 2014.

In the "books" segment, sales decreased after the first nine months compared to the previous year from EUR69.4 million to EUR64.3 million. Key success factors here include the very high turnover contribution of Dan Brown's worldwide bestseller "Inferno" as well as the overwhelming success of "Er ist wieder da" by Timur Vermes in the previous year. BookRix and BEAM contributed a total of EUR0.9 million to turnover in the "books" segment. In the "novel booklets/puzzle magazine" segment, turnover rose slightly from EUR7.8 million in the previous year to EUR7.9 million in the current reporting period.

The "non-books" segment was able to achieve a significant rise in turnover of 82.5 per cent in the nine-month period to EUR14.6 million (previous year: EUR8.0 million). One reason for the increase in turnover is the consolidation of Daedalic Entertainment GmbH with a turnover contribution of EUR4.0 million; another, however, is the pleasing increase in turnover from gift specialist Räder.


All in all, the Christmas period went very well for Bastei Lübbe AG thanks to countless bestseller placements. In the "books" segment, the company was also well represented with countless bestsellers such as Ken Follett's "Edge of Eternity" and Jeff Kinney's "Diary of a Wimpy Kid 9 - The Long Haul!". Turnover also progressed well in the "non-books" segment. Moreover, Daedalic Entertainment GmbH will be publishing some really promising games in the fourth quarter of the 2014/2015 financial year.

The Executive Board also expects a slight increase in sales for the 2014/2015 financial year compared to the previous year. According to the assessment of the Executive Board, the operating revenue for the current financial year will be slightly lower than last year's level - also due to the higher level of write-offs compared to the previous year, currently set at around EUR1 million.

"Even if the current figures are not quite reflecting it yet due to the special items: our strategic development towards becoming a digital multimedia company is making great progress. Our joint venture in America, for example, has been developing very positively. Just in the last few weeks, some very interesting titles and items have been offered to the US joint venture. We are particularly pleased with the development of the online BEAM platform: here, we are just on the cusp of moving forwards with a really innovative, new digital concept", says CEO Thomas Schierack.

The full 9-month report is available for download at http://www.luebbe.de/Investor-Relations/_investor_finanzberichte_de.

Bastei Lübbe AG will be holding a German-language telephone conference today, 13 February 2015 at 10:00 am, for interested investors or press representatives. To register, please send an e-mail to sh@crossalliance.de.

About Bastei Lübbe AG:

Bastei Lübbe AG is a media company in the form of a publishing house. The company is based in Cologne, Germany, and has around 335 employees. In the context of its business activities, Bastei Lübbe publishes books, audiobooks, eBooks and digital products with fictional and popular scientific content as well as periodically published magazines in the form of novel booklets and puzzle books. The business activities of Bastei Lübbe also include the licensing of rights and the development, production and distribution of gift, decorative and merchandising items. Bastei Lübbe has been the market leader almost continuously in the growing fictional hardback segment for many years, and the company was also market leader in the fictional eBooks segment in 2013. In 2013, Bastei Lübbe AG celebrated its 60-year anniversary and was listed on the stock exchange. Bastei Lübbe AG shares are listed in the Prime Standard segment of the Frankfurt Stock Exchange (WKN A1X3YY, ISIN DE000A1X3YY0).

Contact Bastei Lübbe AG:
Barbara Fischer
Head of Press and
Event Marketing
Tel.: 0221 / 82 00 28 50
E-mail: barbara.fischer@luebbe.de

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