Bastei Lübbe AG publishes 2015/2016 quarterly result: Digital share in overall turnover rises to 32.4 %

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

2015-08-13 / 08:03

Bastei Lübbe AG publishes 2015/2016 quarterly result:
Digital share in overall turnover rises to 32.4 %

- Group turnover grows moderately to EUR20.7 million (Q1 2014/2015: EUR20.6 million) in accordance with expectations

- Consolidated EBITDA is significantly above expectations at EUR-0.5 million (Q1 2014/20015: EUR1.1 million) despite high investment in digital growth

- Overall prospects for 2015/2016: Large numbers of top titles ensure unchanged positive outlook

Cologne, 13 August 2015. Bastei Lübbe AG, which is listed in the Prime Standard of the Frankfurt Stock Exchange (ISIN DE000A1X3YY0), submitted its 2015/2016 quarterly report today. The Cologne-based media group generated turnover of EUR20.7 million in the period from 1 April to 30 June 2015, after EUR20.6 million in the previous year. Group turnover is within internal planning compared to the same quarter in the previous year, having grown slightly.

Despite a negative tendency, earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA) developed in the reporting period much better than had been anticipated, reaching EUR-0.5 million (Q1 2014/2015: EUR1.1 million). The difference of the consolidated EBITDA compared to the previous year is mainly caused by increased personnel costs in the digital sector and a lower valuation of inventories. Net profit for the period was EUR-1.7 million in the first quarter of 2015/2016 (Q1 2014/2015: EUR-0.1 million), earnings per share being EUR-0.13 after EUR-0.01 in the same quarter in the previous year.

At EUR9.0 million, turnover in the "books" segment was below the previous year's value of EUR10.1 million in the first three months. The novel booklets and puzzle magazines segment generated turnover of EUR2.3 million in the reporting period compared with EUR2.5 million in the previous year. The non-books segment was able to generate a significant rise in turnover in the 3-month period, reaching EUR2.8 million (previous year: EUR2.0 million).

Digital content plays an increasingly important role in Bastei Lübbe's business model. For this reason, the turnover and costs generated from digital content are shown in a separate segment, the "Digital" business sector, for the first time in the present 2015/2016 Q1 report. These include Bastei Lübbe AG's digital eBook and audio products as well as the subsidiaries Daedalic Entertainment GmbH (games developer and publisher) and BookRix GmbH & Co. KG (self-publishing platform). The new "Digital" segment was able once more to increase its turnover in the first quarter of the current financial year, reaching EUR6.7 million (previous year: EUR6.0 million). The proportion of digital turnover was 32.4% in the first three months, and has hence increased once more (previous year: 29.0%).

The consolidated balance sheet total amounted to EUR122.1 million as of 30 June 2015, following EUR124.3 million as of 31 March 2015. Shareholders' equity, including the shares held by other shareholders, was EUR59.0 million as at 30 June 2015 (48.3%), compared to EUR60.7 million as at 31 March 2015.


The prospects for the 2015/2016 financial year remain positive, even if plans for the current second quarter indicate a slight decline in sales and earnings performance. The second and in particular, third quarter of 2015/2016 feature Christmas trade. Bastei Lübbe AG is represented here once again this year with numerous best-selling titles. As well as "Der Palast der Meere", by Rebecca Gablé, there is also "Das Joshua-Profil" by Sebastian Fitzek and the eagerly-awaited anniversary edition (tenth volume) of Gregs Tagebuch "So ein Mist!" by Jeff Kinney. In addition, further potential bestsellers will be published such as new books from Andrea Camilleri and Sarah Lark as well as two political titles from Malu Dreyer and Michail Gorbachev. The Company estimates that these titles will also produce very good digital sales and therefore also provide further impetus to the digital segment.

The planned expansion of BEAM to become an international mobile first-reading platform is advancing successfully, and the subsidiary Daedalic Entertainment GmbH is working hard on the realisation of further storytelling games, particularly the game based on Ken Follett's megaseller "Die Säulen der Erde", which had a major echo when it was announced at this year's Gamescom, and which is to be released worldwide in 2017.

The Executive Board anticipates a slight increase in group revenue all in all for the financial year 2015/2016 in comparison to the previous year. Due to the expected launch costs in the digital sector as well as higher personnel costs that arise in order to continue down the path of continued digitalisation and internationalisation, EBITDA is likely to be at lower levels in the current financial year compared to the previous year. "We are engaging in a large-scale transformation to become an international digital media group. This year of expansion and transition is also reflected in our cautious target figures for the entire financial year 2015/2016. The good 3-month result allows us to remain optimistic, as it shows how far we have come on our journey", says Thomas Schierack, CEO of Bastei Lübbe AG.

The complete 3-month report is available on the Internet at https://www.luebbe.com/en/investor-relations/financial-reports.

Bastei Lübbe AG will be holding a telephone conference in German for interested investors and press representatives today, 13 August 2015, at 10.00 a.m. Please register by sending an e-mail to sh@crossalliance.de.

About Bastei Lübbe AG:
Bastei Lübbe is a media company in the form of a trade book publisher. The Company, which is based in Cologne, has roughly 437 employees at Group level. Within the scope of its business activities, Bastei Lübbe publishes books, audiobooks, e-books and other digital products in the genres of fiction and popular science as well as periodicals including novel booklets and puzzle magazines. The business activities of Bastei Lübbe also include the licensing of rights and the development, production and sale of gifts, decorative items and merchandise. Bastei Lübbe has been the virtual market leader in the growing segment of fictional hardcovers for many years, and the Company is also the number 1 in fictional e-books in 2013. Bastei Lübbe celebrated its 60th anniversary in 2013 and became listed on the stock exchange. The shares of Bastei Lübbe AG are listed on the Prime Standard of the Frankfurt Stock Exchange (WKN A1X3YY, ISIN DE000A1X3YY0).

Contact at 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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