Bloomsbury, the book publisher of the Harry Potter franchise, has announced record sales and profits thanks to the popularity of new titles such as Tom Kerridge’s latest cookbook, this despite the ongoing supply chain issues affecting the UK.
The company said that the increase in reading during the ongoing Coronavirus pandemic led people to “rediscover the joy of reading,” with fantasy, escapism, and cookery genres selling particularly well.
It said their revenues for the six months to the end of August were also helped by customers ordering books earlier than normal. Book sales typically peak in the three months leading into the Christmas period, this year that peak seems to have arrived early, likely sparked in part thanks to the supply chain issues across the country.
Last month a number of retailers and publishers warned of potential delays in the run up to Christmas thanks to a national shortage of lorry drivers. The UK’s largest bookseller, Waterstones, said it had upped its stock holding by a quarter to help alleviate any problems.
Bloomsbury has likewise increased its stock levels to almost £37m, this is up from £26m the year previously.
The publishers consumer division has posted a 29% revenue growth, thanks in no small part to books such as A Court of Silver Flames by Sarah J Maas and Outdoor Cooking from Michelen-starred chef Tom Kerridge.
The company also said that sales of the Harry Potter series were also good and the books were still amongst its best sellers. They also launched Our Biggest Experiment: A History of the Climate Crisis by Alice Bell back in July, which is performing well in the run up to the Cop26 summit that starts in Glasgow on Saturday.
Overall, the company has revealed they made revenues of £100.7m in the first half, which is up 29%, while their underlying profits before tax were £12.9m, up 220%. They expect to make revenues of £193m and an underlying pre-tax profit of £19.3m by the end of the year.