Wiley Reports Fourth Quarter and Fiscal Year 2024 Results

“We finished the year strong and head into Fiscal 2025 with full confidence in our Research trajectory, GenAI momentum, and profit and performance outlook,” said Matthew Kissner, Interim President and CEO. “We are seeing robust demand to publish and significant output acceleration in Research as well as continued outperformance in Learning. On top of this, we’re seeing significant interest in leveraging our authoritative content to train AI and machine learning models. Finally, we’ve executed on our stated commitments with discipline and speed, enabling us to exceed our earnings guidance and accelerate our cost savings program, setting us up well for continued margin expansion and strong cash generation ahead.” Fiscal Year 2024 was a transition year for Wiley as the Company divested non-core assets, restructured and realigned the organization, and recorded multiple non-cash impairments. Results reflect this activity. GAAP Results (including Held for Sale or Sold Assets): Revenue of $468 million (-11%), Operating income of $69 million (-17%), and EPS of $0.46 (-$0.76).
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5 Takeaways from the 2024 National Postal Forum (piworld.com)

1. The rate increase. There is no way to get around it or ignore it — perhaps the single biggest topic of conversation at this years’ event was the postal rate increases. 2. Mail is becoming a luxury item. On the heels of the rate changes, many are noting that brands are beginning to see the mail component of their marketing campaigns as more of a luxury line item. 3. Design is critical. While certainly not a new phenomenon, the design of the mail piece is only becoming more critical. 4. Postal discounts are more critical than ever before. Speaking of postal discounts, there are a lot of programs out there that brands and mailers could — and should — be taking advantage of, and those discounts are shifting and changing. 5. Direct mail works. Direct mail is still the single marketing channel that gets the most return on investment of every platform — multiple sessions noted that ROI for direct mail sits at around 40%, which is significantly higher than any other channel.
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Adobe Announces General Availability of Adobe Experience Platform AI Assistant to Supercharge Enterprise Productivity

Adobe announced the general availability of Adobe Experience Platform (AEP) AI Assistant, previewed at Adobe Summit in March 2024. This new offering enhances the productivity of experience practitioners through generative AI, while democratizing access to enterprise applications by bringing more individuals into content production and insights workflows. AEP is the solution of choice for organizations to build a single view of customers and engage them on every channel, used by leading brands including The Coca-Cola Company, Major League Baseball, Marriott International, General Motors, TSB Bank, Real Madrid and others. With AEP AI Assistant, brands can now deliver value to their organizations through a conversational interface that provides a deeper understanding of data and an ability to streamline workflows. Embedded within Adobe Experience Cloud applications including Real-Time Customer Data Platform, Adobe Journey Optimizer and Customer Journey Analytics, AEP AI Assistant can answer technical questions, automate tasks, simulate outcomes, and generate new audiences and journeys. These capabilities are brought to life through generative experience models, which capture Adobe product knowledge and insights based on an organization’s unique data, campaigns, audiences and business goals—all in a brand-safe way and with a privacy-first mindset.
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Tribune Publishing And Union Agree To Two-Year Contract (mediapost.com)

Union members at several Tribune Publishing newsrooms have ratified a two-year contract with owner Alden Global Capital after five years of negotiations , according to the NewsGuild. The agreement provides for wage increases of 3% per year for two years and maintenance of existing 401K matches for all participating employees. Some NewsGuild members took part in a 24-hour strike earlier this year.
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Postal Service Announces Industry Award Winners at the National Postal Forum

In recognition of outstanding achievements in mailing and shipping industry innovations and industry best practices, USPS awarded its 2024 Delivering for America Partnership for Excellence awards to several recipients on the final day of the National Postal Forum (NPF), the country’s premier mailing and shipping conference. The Delivering for America Partnership for Excellence awards are bestowed at NPF to recognize companies that have made significant contributions to the mailing and shipping industry with forward-thinking and innovative practices. The Postmaster General and USPS Executive Leadership Team personally select the winners, who have successfully worked with the organization to enhance the value of what we deliver every day — mail and packages. Awards were presented to customers in seven categories: the Regional Shipper of the Year Award, the Shipping Innovator of the Year Award, the Driver of the Year Award, the Carrier of the Year Award, the Mailer of the Year Award, the Mail Service Provider of the Year Award, and the Supplier of the Year Award.
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Barnes & Noble Announces The Best Books of 2024 (So Far)

Barnes & Noble is thrilled to announce their selections for The Best Books of the Year (So Far). The list is a compilation of categories hand-selected by the B&N bookselling team, each featuring several titles that represent the crème de la crème of books published since January of 2024. From household names to debut authors, picture books to memoirs, the Best Books of 2024 (So Far) captures the brilliance of publishing in the first half of this memorable year. These 12 unique collections encompass a wide range of genres, highlighting books that will surprise and delight a broad readership, including: *Horror Rewind: 5 VHS Thrills and Chills; *They Write, We Score: 10 Sports Romances We Cheer For; *Micro to Macro: 7 Science and Nature Titles to Explore and more.; *The Cutting Edge: 8 Spredges We're Obsessed With.
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‘Field & Stream’ Publishes Its First Print Magazine In Four Years (mediapost.com)

Field & Stream, the outdoor magazine that first appeared in 1871, has returned to print with an issue out on June 5, its first in four years. Field & Stream Journal features 160 pages of outdoor content, presented in an oversized 10x12-inch format. This is the first new issue since Field & Stream was acquired by country music stars Eric Church and Morgan Wallen and other brand builders earlier this year.
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The Case for Rolling Back Postage Prices for Catalogs and Direct Mail (piworld.com)

The postal price increases for marketing mail are driving down volume and, more importantly for the USPS, driving down profits. The postal price increases need to be rolled back. Basic economic principles apply to the pricing decisions for catalogs and direct mail: Catalogs (and direct mail) are very sensitive to the cost of mailing. Catalogers decide how much to mail based on their breakeven cost. Catalogers track their breakeven costs very closely and make circulation decisions based on their costs. Catalogers have been decreasing their mail volumes because of postage cost increases. Mailing volume correlates directly with costs for catalogs and direct mail.
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‘ARLnow’ Cancels AI-Written Morning Newsletter (mediapost.com)

News site ARLnow is discontinuing a daily newsletter that was created with generative AI. The closure will occur this week as ARLnow launches a new email format for its Afternoon Update. But it could return as it irons out the wrinkles. ARLnow’s morning newsletter was produced with an automated process that provided AI summaries of the previous day’s articles. The morning summaries were generated via ChatGPT APIs “in a writing style somewhat similar to that of Morning Brew,” ARLnow writes.
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Savvas Learning Company CEO Bethlam Forsa Named Most Influential Thought Leader in EdTech

Savvas Learning Company, a next-generation K-12 learning solutions leader, is proud to announce that CEO Bethlam Forsa has been named the “Most Influential Thought Leader in EdTech” by the 2024 SIIA CODiE Education Technology Awards. The CODiE Leadership Award for “Most Influential Thought Leader in EdTech” honors an individual who empowers and inspires the industry through the communication of their insight, expertise, and critical thinking. “I am truly honored to receive this prestigious CODiE Award and want to thank the SIIA for recognizing the importance of edtech innovation in supporting educators and engaging students,” said Forsa. “At Savvas, we are committed to developing the highest-quality instructional solutions that are powered by cutting-edge technology in order to personalize teaching and learning and help all students succeed.”
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Carpenter Buys ‘The Portland Tribune’ And Other Oregon Publications (mediapost.com)

Carpenter Media Group, a publisher based in Mississippi, is continuing its acquisition kick, buying Pamplin Communications, owner of The Portland Tribune and 23 other publications in Oregon, according to Willamette Week. Robert Pamplin Jr. founded the company and the Portland Tribune. Pamplin cited age and health as his reasons for selling. Carpenter recently acquired Black Press Media, publisher of multiple newspapers in the Pacific Northwest. In May, it purchased 10 Southern newspapers and a Georgia printing facility from Community Newspaper Holdings Inc. (CNHI). The company reportedly owned 160 publications.
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‘J-14’ To Reappear In Print In August (mediapost.com)

J-14, a pop culture magazine for teens, will return to print in August after a lapse that began in January. The issue will feature celebrity interviews and posters, fashion and pop culture feature stories, according to ReMIND. It will also include a dose of nostalgia. “J-14 posters are SOOOO back!” J-14 writes. “After a brief hiatus, we’re thrilled to announce the return of J-14 Magazine’s print issue, coming back to racks this August 2024!”
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Costco Wholesale Corporation Reports Third Quarter and Year-to-Date Operating Results for Fiscal 2024

Net sales for the quarter increased 9.1 percent, to $57.39 billion, from $52.60 billion last year. Net sales for the first 36 weeks increased 7.0 percent, to $171.44 billion, from $160.28 billion last year. Net sales were positively impacted by approximately 0.5 to 1.0 percent for the quarter from the shift of the fiscal calendar, as a result of the fifty-third week last year. Net income for the quarter was $1.68 billion, $3.78 per diluted share. Last year’s third quarter net income was $1.30 billion, $2.93 per diluted share, which included a non-recurring charge to merchandise costs of $298 million pretax, $0.50 per diluted share, primarily for the discontinuation of our charter shipping activities. Net income for the first 36 weeks was $5.01 billion, $11.27 per diluted share, compared to $4.13 billion, $9.30 per diluted share, last year.
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Gap Inc. Reports First Quarter Fiscal 2024 Results

First Quarter Fiscal 2024 - Financial Results *Net sales of $3.4 billion were up 3% compared to last year. Comparable sales were up 3% year-over-year. Due to the 53rd week in fiscal 2023, in order to maintain consistency, comparable sales for the first quarter of fiscal 2024 are compared to the 13 weeks ended May 6, 2023. *Gross margin of 41.2% increased 410 basis points versus last year's reported gross margin and increased 400 basis points versus last year's adjusted gross margin, which excludes $4 million in restructuring costs. *Operating income was $205 million; operating margin of 6.1%.
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Ulta Beauty Announces First Quarter Fiscal 2024 Results

First Quarter of Fiscal 2024 Compared to First Quarter of Fiscal 2023 *Net sales increased 3.5% to $2.7 billion compared to $2.6 billion, primarily due to increased comparable sales, new store contribution, and growth in other revenue. *Comparable sales (sales for stores open at least 14 months and e-commerce sales) increased 1.6% compared to the first quarter of fiscal 2023, driven by a 1.3% increase in transactions and a 0.3% increase in average ticket. *Gross profit increased 1.4% to $1.07 billion compared to $1.05 billion. As a percentage of net sales, gross profit decreased to 39.2% compared to 40.0%, primarily due to lower merchandise margins and higher inventory shrink, partially offset by growth in other revenue. *Operating income was $400.9 million, or 14.7% of net sales, compared to $442.1 million, or 16.8% of net sales.
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Nordstrom Reports First Quarter 2024 Earnings

For the first quarter ended May 4, 2024, net sales increased 5.1 percent versus the same period in fiscal 2023, and total Company comparable sales increased 3.8 percent. Gross merchandise value ("GMV") increased 4.9 percent. First quarter net sales include a 75 basis point negative impact from the wind-down of Canadian operations. During the quarter, Nordstrom banner net sales increased 0.6 percent and comparable sales increased 1.8 percent. Net sales for Nordstrom Rack increased 13.8 percent and comparable sales increased 7.9 percent.
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Gannett and Concacaf Announce Media Content Partnership

Gannett Co., Inc. and the USA TODAY Network announced they are official media content partners of The Confederation of North, Central America and Caribbean Association Football (Concacaf), the heartbeat of soccer across North, Central America, and the Caribbean. As one of FIFA’s six continental confederations, Concacaf unites 41 Member Associations spanning from Canada, Guyana, Suriname, and French Guiana. The partnership enhances awareness around the Concacaf’s 2024 Champions Cup, which launched in 2024 as a rebranded and revamped elite men’s club competition. Showcasing the top 27 men’s clubs from North America, Central America, and the Caribbean, this event offers an exciting platform for competitors in the prestigious Concacaf Club Champion title and an automatic qualifying ticket to represent Concacaf at the FIFA Club World Cup, scheduled to take place in the United States in the Summer of 2025.
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Amazon gets federal approval to expand drone deliveries (chainstoreage.com)

The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) is giving Prime Air additional permissions that allow it to operate drones for more deliveries in a wider area. FAA regulations require that all commercial drone operators are able to maintain a line of sight to their drones until it approves a technology that can safely enable drones to fly beyond visual line of sight (BVLOS), a term used in aviation to describe flying a drone where the remote pilot can't see it directly with their own eyes. Instead, a remote pilot relies on instruments or technology to monitor and control the drone at all times. FAA approval for Amazon to operate drones BVLOS will allow Prime Air to further expand drone deliveries and lays the foundation for the e-tailer to scale drone delivery operations to more locations in the U.S.
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PRC Approves Proposed USPS July Rates – Strongly Urges USPS Governors Not to Use All Rate Authority

The Postal Regulatory Commission approved the rates proposed by United States Postal Service for July but also strongly urged the United States Postal Service Governors not to use all the rate authority, citing the comments we and others filed. Although the price adjustments proposed in this proceeding are consistent with applicable law and the Commission has no legal basis to reject the proposed changes, the Commission is concerned, given the current state of affairs, that the Postal Service’s proposal does not reflect reasoned consideration of the potential widespread effects of its proposal, is not prudent, and is not consistent with the best interests of all stakeholders. Specifically, the Commission remains concerned about the substantial declines in Market Dominant volumes, overall service performance for Market Dominant products, and the Postal Service’s overall financial situation, issues that have all remained significant, if not worsened, since the current Market Dominant ratemaking system went into effect.
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Kohl’s Reports First Quarter Fiscal 2024 Financial Results

*Net sales decreased 5.3% year-over-year, to $3.2 billion, with comparable sales down 4.4% *Gross margin as a percentage of net sales was 39.5%, an increase of 48 basis points. *Selling, general & administrative (SG&A) expenses decreased 0.8% year-over-year, to $1.2 billion. As a percentage of total revenue, SG&A expenses were 36.3%, an increase of 166 basis points year-over-year. *Operating income was $43 million compared to $98 million in the prior year. As a percentage of total revenue, operating income was 1.3%, a decrease of 148 basis points year-over-year. *Net loss was $27 million, or ($0.24) per diluted share. This compares to net income of $14 million, or $0.13 per diluted share in the prior year. *Inventory was $3. 1 billion, a decrease of 13% year-over-year. *Operating cash flow was a use of $7 million as compared to a use of $202 million in the prior year.
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News Corp. Deal With OpenAI Proves ‘NY Times’ Suit Is Right, Lawyers Say (mediapost.com)

News Corp.’s deal with OpenAI supports the contention by the New York Times that publishers should be paid when their work is used for AI, Times lawyers say. “The Times is pleased to see that OpenAI increasingly acknowledges this industry-wide problem and is paying publishers for their work,” a Times spokesperson told Legaltech News. The spokesperson adds, “We hope Microsoft will follow suit. It is important for all industry participants to be at the table and for the subsequent deals to adequately reflect the value of high-quality journalism.”
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Carpenter Media Group Buys 10 Southern Newspapers (mediapost.com)

The Carpenter Media Group has acquired 10 Southern newspapers and a Georgia printing facility from Community Newspaper Holdings Inc. (CNHI). Terms of the sale were not disclosed. The printing plant is in Valdosta, Georgia. "We are pleased to succeed CNHI in ownership and responsibility for these institutions and the communities they serve," says Todd Carpenter, chair of Carpenter Media. "We will work hard to build on the good foundations they put down in each place."
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Postmedia Announces the Sale of the Winnipeg Sun, The Graphic Leader, and Kenora Miner & News to the Klein Group

Postmedia Network Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Postmedia Network Canada Corp. announced a definitive agreement to sell the Winnipeg Sun, The Graphic Leader and Kenora Miner & News to The Klein Group Ltd. “We are pleased to have reached an agreement with a local group that will continue Postmedia’s long tradition of providing trusted and valuable journalism in these important markets,” said Andrew MacLeod, President and CEO of Postmedia. “Our teams in Winnipeg, Portage and Kenora produce quality work that is critically important to their communities, and we’re thrilled that will continue under the new ownership group. Each paper’s local team will continue to be supported by the voices and opinions from Postmedia that Canadians rely on for information, diverse perspectives, and unique insights into national and international developments.” Employees at each of the newspapers are expected to continue in their role, with no job losses anticipated. Non-unionized employees will be offered their same job with the Klein Group, while unionized employees will retain their current terms as presently contracted.
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Outlier by Savvas Named to TIME World’s Top EdTech Companies 2024 List

Savvas Learning Company, a next-generation K-12 learning solutions leader, is excited to announce that Outlier by Savvas, its online dual-enrollment course offerings, has been named to TIME World's Top EdTech Companies 2024 list. Outlier by Savvas ranked #73 on this new global ranking of the 250 top edtech companies by TIME in partnership with Statista, a statistics and market research company. Savvas recently acquired Outlier, an edtech startup that has created a portfolio of online, asynchronous dual enrollment courses — with real transferable college credit opportunities from a top 50 university — that enable high school students to earn dual credit while never having to leave their school building. Offering a diverse catalog of award-winning college courses with cinematic lectures from top-rated instructors, Outlier by Savvas provides high school students multiple pathways to college and career.
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Booksellers and librarians agree: young readers are fueling the printed book boom

Millennials and Gen Z are known as “robust samplers,” meaning they are accustomed to a risk-free subscription model for media consumption. Think Netflix, Amazon Unlimited, Audible, and Spotify. As it turns out, according to a new report from the American Library Association (ALA), “in the traditional, print-centered book publishing ecosystem, libraries are the place for robust sampling.” According to the new report Gen Z and Millennials: How They Use Public Libraries and Identify Through Media Use, Gen Z and Millennials (roughly ages 13 to 40) are using public libraries, both in person and digitally, at higher rates than older generations.
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News Corp and OpenAI Sign Landmark Multi-Year Global Partnership

News Corp and OpenAI today announced a historic, multi-year agreement to bring News Corp news content to OpenAI. Through this partnership, OpenAI has permission to display content from News Corp mastheads in response to user questions and to enhance its products, with the ultimate objective of providing people the ability to make informed choices based on reliable information and news sources. OpenAI will receive access to current and archived content from News Corp’s major news and information publications, including The Wall Street Journal, Barron’s, MarketWatch, Investor’s Business Daily, FN, and New York Post; The Times, The Sunday Times and The Sun; The Australian, news.com.au, The Daily Telegraph, The Courier Mail, The Advertiser, and Herald Sun; and others. The partnership does not include access to content from any of News Corp’s other businesses. In addition to providing content, News Corp will share journalistic expertise to help ensure the highest journalism standards are present across OpenAI’s offering.
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URBN Reports Record Q1 Sales and Earnings

Total Company net sales for the three months ended April 30, 2024 increased 7.8% to a record $1.20 billion. Total Retail segment net sales increased 5.8%, with comparable Retail segment net sales increasing 4.6%. Comparable Retail segment net sales increased 17.1% at Free People and 10.4% at Anthropologie and decreased 13.7% at Urban Outfitters. Wholesale segment net sales increased 3.4% driven by a 6.3% increase in Free People wholesale sales due to an increase in sales to department stores and specialty customers, partially offset by a decrease in Urban Outfitters wholesale sales. Nuuly segment net sales increased by 51.4% primarily driven by a 45% increase in average active subscribers in the current quarter versus the prior year quarter.
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U.S. Postal Service Provides Update on Historic Modernization Efforts

To further clarify the implementation plans of the Postal Service Mail Processing Facility Reviews, and continued activity on Regional Processing and Distribution Centers, Sorting and Delivery Centers, and Local Processing Centers, Postmaster General Louis DeJoy transmitted a letter yesterday addressed to Senator Gary Peters, Chairman, Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee. The letter outlines the paused implementation status of the Mail Processing Facility Reviews, as well as the ongoing 2024 activities that will continue to advance and are part of the nearly $15.3 billion in committed self-funded investments. The letter can be found here. “Our Delivering for America Plan initiatives are breathing new life into the U.S. Postal Service. Despite evident progress, it's clear that these efforts should have commenced more than a decade ago," stated Postmaster General and CEO Louis DeJoy. "The need for swift and comprehensive transformation in the Postal Service is undeniable. We remain fully committed to this transformation with the goal of continuously improving service performance for the American people – all while being financially self-sustainable.”
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LinkedIn Begins Labeling AI-Generated Content (mediapost.com)

Following other major social media platforms, LinkedIn has announced that it will begin adding labels to in-stream content created by generative artificial intelligence (AI) so its users better understand the posts they are interacting with. To carry out the labeling process, the business-to-business social network is partnering with the Coalition for Content Provenance and Authenticity (C2PA), a project that aims to develop technical standards for certifying the origins of digital content by enabling consumers to trace the source and authenticity of media content, especially with the use of generative AI. Now, AI-generated content on LinkedIn will include a small C2PA tag in the top right of in-stream visuals. By tapping on the icon, users will be able to find more information about the tagged image. The Coalition’s automatic tags are devised from the code data embedded into the image.
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Target lowers prices on thousands of products in bid to boost sales (digitalcommerce360.com)

Target Corp. announced it will reduce prices on about 5,000 items across its stores and website this summer. The retailer already lowered prices on 1,500 products, with the rest to take effect in coming months. The price changes will be on everyday items that consumers frequently buy, Target said. Products will be marked with red tags in stores and online, the retailer added. “We know consumers are feeling pressured to make the most of their budget, and Target is here to help them save more,” said Rick Gomez, executive vice president and chief food, essentials and beauty officer, in a statement.
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Macy’s, Inc. Reports First Quarter 2024 Results

First Quarter Highlights *Diluted earnings per share of $0.22 and Adjusted diluted earnings per share of $0.27. *Net sales of $4.8 billion, down 2.7% versus the first quarter of 2023. *Comparable sales down 1.2% on an owned basis and down 0.3% on an owned-plus-licensed-plus-marketplace basis. *Gross margin rate for the quarter was 39.2%, down from 40.0% in the first quarter of 2023
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REI kicks off its Anniversary Sale, the co-op’s biggest sale of the year

Specialty outdoor retailer REI Co-op celebrates its members and kicks off the hiking and camping season with the return of its biggest sale of the year. REI’s Anniversary Sale runs May 17 – 27 with major savings on favorite outdoor gear and apparel brands that inspire outdoor adventures all summer. The sale includes deals for everyone, with the deepest savings and special offers available just for co-op members, including savings on all REI Co-op brand gear, clothing, footwear, and bikes. “The co-op has been sharing the love of the outdoors with our members for 86 years,” says Ben Steele, REI executive vice president and chief customer officer. “We continue the tradition on with the Anniversary Sale, one of our favorite ways to celebrate our members with some of the biggest savings on the best gear and apparel.”
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AAP StatShot Report Covering First Quarter of the 2024: Overall Industry Was Flat

Total revenues across all categories for the first quarter of the year were up 0.2% as compared to the first three months of 2023, coming in at $3 billion. Trade (Consumer Books) sales were down 2.8% during the first three months of the year, coming in at $2.1 billion. In terms of physical paper format revenues during the first quarter, in the Trade (Consumer Books) category, Hardback revenues were down 4.9%, coming in at $733.2 million; Paperbacks were down 3.4%, with $756.1 million in revenue; Mass Market was down 25.7% to $31.0 million; and Special Bindings were down 7.8%, with $48.5 million in revenue. eBook revenues were down 1.5% as compared to the first three months of 2023, for a total of $255.6 million. Digital Audio was up 15.3% for the first three months, coming in at $243.6 million in revenue. Physical Audio was down 29.1% coming in at $2.1 million.
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Walmart Releases Q1 FY25 Earnings

First Quarter Highlights • Consolidated revenue of $161.5 billion, up 6.0%, or 5.8% (cc)1, including a benefit of ~1% from an additional selling day • Consolidated gross margin rate up 42bps due to improvements across segments, led by Walmart U.S. • Consolidated operating income up $0.6 billion, or 9.6%; adjusted operating income up 13.7%1 , due to higher gross margins and growth in membership income • Global eCommerce sales grew 21%, led by storefulfilled pickup & delivery and marketplace
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DeJoy agrees to pause some USPS facility changes until 2025 (federalnewsnetwork.com)

The Postal Service is putting an early step in its network modernization plan on hold, after a bipartisan group of senators told the agency to slow down implementation. Postmaster General Louis DeJoy told Sen. Gary Peters (D-Mich.) in a letter last week that USPS will pause the movement of mail processing operations at facilities across the country. Nearly 60 USPS facilities — out of 427 — have initiated Mail Processing Facility Reviews to determine whether the agency should move some of its mail processing operations to larger regional hubs. DeJoy told Peters USPS will put these changes on hold “at least” until Jan. 1, 2025. “Even then, we will not advance these efforts without advising you of our plans to do so, and then only at a moderated pace of implementation,” DeJoy wrote in a May 9 letter.
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U.S. Postal Service Recommends New Prices for Parcel Select

The U.S, Postal Service filed notice with the Postal Regulatory Commission (PRC) for Parcel Select price changes to take effect July 14, 2024. The proposed adjustments were approved by the Postal Service Governors this week. If favorably reviewed by the Commission, the new rates include an average 25-percent increase for Parcel Select service. Parcel Select is a shipping solution for high volume shippers to enter packages for regional delivery through the U.S. Postal Service’s network. As a strategic part of the Delivering for America 10-year plan, these proposed changes will support the Postal Service in creating a revitalized organization capable of achieving our public service mission – providing a nationwide, integrated network for the delivery of mail and packages at least six days a week – in a cost-effective and financially sustainable manner over the long term, just as the U.S. Congress has intended.
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The Cases Against Book Bans (publishersweekly.com)

Amid a three-year nationwide surge in book bans, 2024 began on a hopeful note for freedom-to-read advocates, with legal victories in book-banning lawsuits in Iowa, Florida, and Texas. But after some early successes, several cases are poised to enter a critical next phase. As the wheels of justice grind on, PW rounded up the status of some of the more closely watched book-banning suits. Perhaps no lawsuit has generated more attention than the challenge to HB 900 in Texas, which, among its provisions, would have forced booksellers in the state to rate books for sexual content as a condition of doing business with Texas public schools. In January, a three-judge panel of the Fifth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals upheld district court judge Alan D. Albright’s decision to block the most odious parts of the law. But a subsequent order from the Fifth Circuit has delivered something of wake-up call for freedom-to-read advocates. In another closely watched case featuring library books, federal judge Sharon Gleason is weighing whether to order dozens of books taken from library shelves in the Mat-Su Borough School District in Alaska returned while a lawsuit challenging their removal is heard.
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U.S. Postal Service Reports Second Quarter Fiscal Year 2024 Results

The U.S. Postal Service today announced its financial results for the second quarter of fiscal year 2024 (Jan. 1, 2024 - Mar. 31, 2024). The net loss for the quarter under generally accepted accounting principles (GAAP) totaled $1.5 billion, compared to a net loss of $2.5 billion for the same quarter last year. GAAP results for the quarter were negatively impacted by $1.4 billion of expenses attributed to the amortization of unfunded retiree pension liabilities, offset by a workers' compensation non-cash benefit of $224 million driven by actuarial revaluation and discount rate changes; these factors are not controllable by the Postal Service. Controllable loss, as defined below, for the quarter was $317 million, compared to a controllable loss of $498 million for the same quarter last year. These results were favorably impacted by increased revenue and lower transportation costs, partially offset by the continued effect of inflation on operating expenses. Total operating revenue was $19.7 billion for the quarter, an increase of $410 million, or 2.1 percent, compared to the same quarter last year.
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E-commerce Spend Grows to $331.6 billion, as Consumers Trade Down to Cheaper Goods Online

Adobe released online shopping data for the first four months of 2024, covering the period from Jan. 1 to Apr. 30, 2024. Based on Adobe Analytics data, the report provides the most comprehensive view into U.S. e-commerce by analyzing commerce transactions online, covering over one trillion visits to U.S. retail sites, 100 million SKUs and 18 product categories. Adobe Analytics is part of Adobe Experience Cloud, relied upon by over 85% of the top 100 internet retailers in the U.S.* to deliver, measure and personalize shopping experiences online. Consumers spent $331.6 billion online from Jan. 1 to Apr. 30, 2024, up 7% year-over-year (YoY). The growth has been supported by stable spend in discretionary categories including electronics and apparel, along with a continued surge in grocery shopping online. Adobe expects the first half of 2024 to drive over $500 billion in spend online, representing 6.8% YoY growth.
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YETI Reports First Quarter 2024 Results

First Quarter 2024 Results: *Sales and adjusted sales both increased 13% to $341.4 million, compared to $302.8 million during the same period last year. *Gross profit increased 20% to $194.8 million, or 57.1% of sales, compared to $161.9 million, or 53.5% of sales, in the first quarter of 2023. The 360 basis point increase in gross margin was primarily due to lower inbound freight costs and lower product costs. *Operating income increased 71.0% to $25.8 million, or 7.6% of sales, compared to $15.1 million, or 5.0% of sales during the prior year quarter. *Net income increased 50% to $15.9 million, or 4.6% of sales, compared to $10.6 million, or 3.5% of sales in the prior year quarter; Net income per diluted share was $0.18, compared to $0.12 in the prior year quarter.
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News Corp Reports Third Quarter Results for Fiscal 2024

Fiscal 2024 Third Quarter Key Financial Highlights: *Third quarter revenues were $2.42 billion, a 1% decrease compared to $2.45 billion in the prior year, reflecting a $21 million, or 1%, negative impact from foreign currency fluctuations. Adjusted Revenues were flat compared to the prior year *Net income in the quarter was $42 million, compared to net income of $59 million in the prior year
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Bucks County Papers Sold To O’Rourke Media Group (mediapost.com)

Times Publishing Newspapers Inc., owner of several magazine-style newspapers in the Bucks County, Pennsylvania area, has been acquired by O’Rourke Media Group of Gilbert, Arizona. Terms were not disclosed. The properties, which appear 11 times per year via the U.S. Postal Service, include the Doylestown Observer, Fairless Focus, Langhorne Ledger, Morrisville Times, Newtown Gazette, Northampton Herald, New Hope News, Lower Southampton Spirit, Warwick Journal,and the Yardley Voice , according to the New Hope Free Press.
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Give the Gift of a Printed Book This Graduation Season

Paper plays a major role in every student’s life during graduation season. It’s in the programs handed out to students and families at end-of-school award ceremonies and graduations. It’s in the greeting cards and beautifully wrapped presents that celebrate this scholarly achievement. It’s in the decorations at parties and receptions. And, of course, it’s there in the classic diploma that proves you’re ready for the next big adventure in life. Unlike electronic files and digital photos, paper mementos are tangible reminders of the many years of school that culminate in graduation season. In fact, paper helps deliver some of the most definitive experiences of our lives. Paper certificates, childhood artwork, printed photos and special collections, such as baseball cards or comic books, are often among our most treasured possessions, and they tend to take on even greater importance as we age. If your loved one is celebrating this graduation season, why not continue the paper theme by giving printed books as graduation gifts? Whether you choose a classic title or something more contemporary, a printed book with a meaningful handwritten message can make a great gift that your graduate will treasure for years to come.
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The New York Times Company Reports First-Quarter 2024 Results

Meredith Kopit Levien, president and chief executive officer, The New York Times Company, said, "2024 is off to a strong start, as our results reflect the power of our strategy to be the essential subscription for every curious person seeking to understand and engage with the world, and as our world-class news and lifestyle products continue to attract huge and deeply engaged audiences. Our first quarter financial performance illustrates that our news-based, multi-product, multi-revenue subscription strategy continues to work as designed, and is on track to drive continued growth in revenue and earnings as well as generate healthy free cash flow in 2024.
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Two Pulitzer Prizes For Penguin Random House

Two authors from Penguin Random House, Jayne Anne Phillips and Cristina Rivera Garza, were awarded a Pulitzer Prize this year. They won in the “Fiction” and “Memoir or Autobiography” categories. Since the Pulitzer Prize was introduced in 1917, a total of 137 Penguin Random House authors have received the famous award. It is the continuation of a fine tradition that goes back more than 100 years. When this year’s Pulitzer Prize winners were announced at Columbia University in New York on Monday, Penguin Random House authors were once again among the honorees: Jayne Anne Phillips and Cristina Rivera Garza were honored in the “Fiction” and “Memoir or Autobiography” categories. The Pulitzer Prize is one of the most prestigious literary prizes in the United States, and is given in the categories of “Fiction,” “History,” “Biography,” “Memoir or Autobiography,” “Poetry,” and “General Nonfiction.”
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Paxton Media Group Acquires ‘Kernersville News (mediapost.com)

Paxton Media Group (PMG) has acquired Kernersville (North Carolina) News, a twice-weekly newspaper published by the Carter/Owensby-Harrell family since its launch in 1938. The terms were not disclosed. “It is time for the family to move on,” the family says. Kernersville News joins almost 20 other Paxton newspapers in North Carolina, which are managed by group publisher Jana Thomasson.
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Pennsylvania To Study Whether Notices Should Still Be Placed In Print Newspapers (mediapost.com)

Pennsylvania is the latest state that could stop jurisdictions from paying newspapers for publishing their legal notices. The State Senate whip, Sen. Ryan Aument (R), is calling for a study to assess the cost of paid public notices. This would include all locales statewide. That study, he wrote, “will go a long way to helping the Legislature decide if continued advertising in print newspapers is still the best method to ensure this important information reaches the public.”
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Simon & Schuster Acquires Dutch Publisher Veen Bosch & Keuning (publishersweekly.com)

Simon & Schuster has acquired Veen Bosch & Keuning, the largest Dutch book publishing house. The acquisition includes all of VBK's imprints in the Netherlands and Belgium, as well as its sister companies, the audiobook producer Thinium, and Bookchoice, a subscription-based platform for e-books and audiobooks. Financial terms of the cash acquisition, which is still subject to review, were not disclosed. The move marks the first major instance of a promised international expansion of S&S, which CEO Jonathan Karp alluded to last year following the acquisition of S&S by private equity firm KKR. The acquisition is also S&S's first of a non-English-language publisher, and provides the company a new foothold in the European market, where "the companies aim to provide a better avenue to sell, produce, and distribute... titles in Europe and to publish more S&S titles locally," as per a release.
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Chicago’s ‘Reader’ To Return To A Weekly Print Schedule (mediapost.com)

The Chicago Reader, an alternative nonprofit newspaper, is returning to weekly print production. The first weekly issue will be on June 5. The paper had reverted to a bi-weekly schedule in June 2020. The increased schedule reflects several imperatives. For one, “Chicago’s creative, civic, and cultural concerns don’t reproduce on a biweekly basis, nor do they circulate equitably from behind an online paywall,” writes Solomon Lieberman, CEO & Publisher of the Reader Institute for Community Journalism, which publishes the Reader.
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Gannett Sells ‘The Farmington Daily Times’ To Ballantine (mediapost.com)

Ballantine Communications Inc. has signed a deal to acquire The Farmington (New Mexico) Daily Times from Gannett, effective June 1. Terms have not been disclosed. Ballantine plans to merge the Tri-City Record, which it founded last year to cover the Aztec, Bloomfield and Farmington communities., with the Farmington Daily Times, the latter reports. Gannett has sold numerous papers to local owners. Gannett purchased the Daily Times in 2015.
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S&P Global Announces Successful Completion of Visible Alpha Acquisition

S&P Global announced the successful completion of its acquisition of Visible Alpha, the financial technology provider of deep industry and segment consensus data, creating a premium offering of fundamental investment research capabilities on S&P Global Market Intelligence's Capital IQ Pro platform. Visible Alpha will be operated within the S&P Global Market Intelligence division. "Visible Alpha and its innovative team are an outstanding complement to S&P Global's culture and capabilities," said Adam Kansler, President of S&P Global Market Intelligence. "The integration of Visible Alpha into S&P Capital IQ Pro demonstrates another transformative leap for our platform and reflects our combined commitment to providing customers with the highest quality investment research, estimates and analytics in the market."
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Gannett Announces First Quarter 2024 Results

First Quarter 2024 Highlights: • Total revenues of $635.8 million decreased 5.0% compared to the first quarter of 2023, reflecting improvement on revenue declines of 8.4% in the fourth quarter of 2023 compared to the prior year fourth quarter • Net loss attributable to Gannett of $84.8 million includes an impairment charge of approximately $46.0 million related to the exit of our leased facility in McLean, Virginia during the first quarter of 2024 • Adjusted EBITDA(3) totaled $57.6 million, a decrease of 8.4% compared to the first quarter of 2023
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Firecrown Media Acquires Railroad Fan Magazines From Kalmbach Media (mediapost.com)

Firecrown Media has acquired Trains magazine and several other railroading publications from Kalmbach Media, Trains reports. The terms were not disclosed. Also included are Classic Trains, Model Railroader, Classic Toy Trains, FineScale Modeler, and Astronomy. Firecrown owns numerous transportation brands, including Flying, Plane & Pilot, Boating, Yachting, and the supply chain site FreightWaves.
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Savvas Introduces Newest Edition of its Award-Winning myPerspectives Program With Powerful Interactive Resources for Teachers and Students

Savvas Learning Company announced the newest edition of its award-winning, standards-aligned myPerspectives English Language Arts (ELA) program, enhanced with powerful interactive resources that provide students with exciting multimedia content and give teachers valuable tools to monitor students’ progress in real-time. Building on its highly successful, evidence-based approach that improves student outcomes, myPerspectives © 2025 for grades 6-12 offers greater opportunities for student engagement, increased options for differentiated teaching, and more reading and writing support to help every student achieve their potential.
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U.S. Consumer Time Spent With Media Fell For First Time In 2023 (mediapost.com)

The good news -- or bad news, depending on how you look at it -- is that consumer time spent with media continues to expand. The really bad news for the ad industry is that ad-supported media's share continues to decline, in both the U.S. and worldwide. Those are among the findings in the 2024 edition of an annual Global Consumer Media Usage Forecast released this morning by PQ Media. While total weekly time spent with media actually declined 0.4% to 76.69 hours in the U.S., and inched up only 0.3% to 56.15 hours worldwide, PQ forecasts it will rebound again this year and continue expanding for the foreseeable future.
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Sam’s Club Deploys AI-Powered Exit Technology at 120+ Locations

Sam’s Club announced significant progress in its rollout of technology that resolves a key member concern – waiting in line for receipt verification to exit the club. The retailer’s first-of-its-kind application of artificial intelligence and computer vision technology has been successfully deployed in more than 120 clubs since first unveiling it at the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in January. Sam’s Club’s rapid deployment of its exit technology represents the largest-scale implementation of member-facing AI-powered technology in the retail industry. The retailer’s announcement of reaching the milestone of deploying at 20% of its clubs in the first quarter comes as other retailers have struggled to deploy similar technology at scale, with some abandoning efforts, just starting initial pilots or having no plans to enhance customer experiences through checkout and store exit technologies.
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Amazon.com Announces First Quarter Results

*Net sales increased 13% to $143.3 billion in the first quarter, compared with $127.4 billion in first quarter 2023. Excluding the $0.2 billion unfavorable impact from year-over-year changes in foreign exchange rates throughout the quarter, net sales increased 13% compared with first quarter 2023. *Operating income increased to $15.3 billion in the first quarter, compared with $4.8 billion in first quarter 2023. *Net income increased to $10.4 billion in the first quarter, or $0.98 per diluted share, compared with $3.2 billion, or $0.31 per diluted share, in first quarter 2023. *Operating cash flow increased 82% to $99.1 billion for the trailing twelve months, compared with $54.3 billion for the trailing twelve months ended March 31, 2023.
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S&P Global Reports First Quarter Results

The Company reported first quarter 2024 revenue of $3.491 billion, an increase of 10% compared to the first quarter of 2023. First quarter GAAP net income increased 25% to $991 million and GAAP diluted earnings per share increased 28% to $3.16 as higher net income was driven primarily by strong growth in Ratings and Indices, and lower merger-related costs. Excluding the impact of Engineering Solutions (ES), revenue growth would have been 14% year over year. Adjusted net income for the first quarter increased 24% to $1,258 million and adjusted diluted earnings per share increased 27% to $4.01. “S&P Global's first quarter results are a testament to the value we create for our customers around the world, as well as the strength of our global franchise, our world-class team, and our commitment to innovation.
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UPS Releases 1Q 2024 Earning

UPS announced first-quarter 2024 consolidated revenues of $21.7 billion, a 5.3% decrease from the first quarter of 2023. Consolidated operating profit was $1.6 billion, down 36.5% compared to the first quarter of 2023, and down 31.5% on an adjusted basis. Diluted earnings per share were $1.30 for the quarter; adjusted diluted earnings per share of $1.43 were 35.0% below the same period in 2023. For the first quarter of 2024, GAAP results include a total charge of $110 million, or $0.13 per diluted share, comprised of after-tax transformation and other charges of $75 million and a non-cash, after-tax impairment charge of $35 million, driven by plans to consolidate certain acquired brands within the company’s healthcare portfolio.
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Walmart Health Is Closing

Back in 2019, we launched Walmart Health centers. During our five-year journey, we made meaningful impacts with patients while continuing to learn, pivot and evolve. While our mission to help people save money and live better remains, today we are sharing the difficult decision to close Walmart Health and Walmart Health Virtual Care. Through our experience managing Walmart Health centers and Walmart Health Virtual Care, we determined there is not a sustainable business model for us to continue. The decision to close all 51 health centers across five states and shut down the virtual care offering was not easy. We understand this change affects lives – the patients who receive care, the associates and providers who deliver care and the communities who supported us along the way. This is a difficult decision, and like others, the challenging reimbursement environment and escalating operating costs create a lack of profitability that make the care business unsustainable for us at this time.
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Publishers, Authors and Booksellers File Amicus Brief Supporting Plaintiffs in Suit Challenging Iowa Censorship Law

On April 19, 2024, the Association of American Publishers, joined by the American Booksellers for Free Expression, Authors Guild, Inc., Comic Book Legal Defense Fund, Educational Book and Media Association, Freedom to Learn Advocates, Half Price Books, Records, Magazines, Inc., Independent Book Publishers Association, National Press Photographers Association, National Writers Union and Sisters in Crime, filed an amicus brief in Iowa in support of the plaintiffs in two lawsuits, filed in November 2023, challenging provisions of SF 496, a 2023 law that violates constitutional standards by censoring books for students in a vague and overbroad fashion. The lawsuits, Penguin Random House, LLC. v. Robbins and GLBT Youth in IA Schools, Etc. v. Reynolds, were filed in November 2023 by plaintiff groups that include publishers, renowned authors, educators, and students.
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Five Publishers Join Lawsuit to Stop Iowa Book Banning Bill (publishersweekly.com)

After a federal judge blocked key parts of SF 496, Iowa’s anti-LGBTQ book banning law, last December, five more publishers—including all four remaining Big Five publishers—have now joined Penguin Random House on the joint lawsuit against the state as plaintiffs, to help defend against the state’s bid to lift the block on appeal. In a release this week, Hachette, HarperCollins, Macmillan, Simon & Schuster, and Sourcebooks announced that they have joined the initial plaintiffs, which included PRH, the Iowa State Education Association (ISEA), four renowned authors (Laurie Halse Anderson, John Green, Malinda Lo, and Jodi Picoult), and a group of teachers and students. “We as publishers are uniting in our unwavering commitment to stand with educators, librarians, students, authors, and readers against the unconstitutional censorship measures being imposed by the state of Iowa," the publishers said in a joint statement.
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Postmedia Launches New App

Postmedia today announced the launch of a new app offering subscribers an integrated, streamlined and personalized experience, with seamless access to their preferred content across Postmedia’s brands. “Our readers have told us what they want and need in their online news and information experiences, and we’re delivering with the launch of our new app.” said Duncan Clark, Chief Content Officer at Postmedia. “The app combines a personalized experience with local curation and access to breaking news, as part of an intuitive design that makes it easier than ever to engage with our journalism.” Postmedia brands now available on both iOS and Android include: Montreal Gazette, Vancouver Sun, Calgary Herald, Ottawa Citizen, Edmonton Journal, The London Free Press, Regina Leader-Post, Saskatoon StarPhoenix, Windsor Star, National Post and Financial Post.
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SupplyLand: ESSENTIAL SUPPLIES FOR YOUR BUSINESS

Introducing SupplyLand, a one stop solution for all your supply needs! Now sourcing business supplies is transformed into an exciting journey, far from the ordinary. Here’s What Sets Us Apart:Curated Selection: Explore our hand-picked assortment of packaging, cleaning, safety, and maintenance products. Swift Delivery: Our inventory is always ready to go, ensuring your orders are on their way to you without delay. Competitive Pricing: Tiered discount pricing. The more you buy, the more you save! Exclusive Perks: Orders of $150+ qualify for shipping savings and unique free swag gifts. It is not just shopping; it is gaining value with every purchase. More Than Supplies: At SupplyLand, we are injecting excitement into the procurement process. Do not take our word for it. Give us a try for yourself! Take 10% off your first order with Promo Code: PAPERCLIPS
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HMH’s Innovative, Integrated Solutions Recognized in 2024 EdTech Cool Tool Awards

Learning technology company HMH announced that three of its solutions have been honored in EdTech Digest’s 2024 EdTech Cool Tool Awards. HMH Read 180 was named the winner in the literacy/reading category. HMH was also named a finalist for two of its integrated solutions – English 3D and HMH Math 180. Presented by EdTech Digest, the EdTech Awards recognize people for outstanding contributions in transforming education through technology to enrich the lives of learners everywhere. HMH Read 180 was named winner in “Literacy/Reading Solution”: HMH Read 180 represents a blended learning solution meticulously designed to elevate literacy proficiency and cultivate a growth mindset in Grades 3--12. Functioning as an intervention program, it extends essential support to all students reading below grade level, encompassing those with disabilities, special education requirements, and multilingual learners.
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Postmedia Reports Second Quarter Results

Revenue for the quarter was $97.3 million as compared to $111.8 million in the same period in the prior year, representing a decrease of $14.5 million (13.0%). The revenue decrease was primarily due to decreases in advertising revenue of $11.3 million (20.8%) and circulation revenue of $4.1 million (11.1%), partially offset by increases in parcel revenue of $2.4 million (20.5%). Net loss in the quarter ended February 29, 2024 was $20.1 million, as compared to a net loss of $20.8 million in the same period in the prior year. The decrease in net loss was primarily the result of decreases in depreciation and restructuring expenses, as well as a decrease in foreign exchange losses, partially offset by an increase in operating loss before depreciation, amortization and restructuring, and a decrease in gain on disposal of property, plant and equipment, assets held-for-sale and other assets.
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A Fork in the Road: Walmart Bets on Associates, Automation

At Walmart Distribution Center 6020 in Brooksville, Florida, we’re used to pioneering new technology. In fact, 6020 was Walmart’s first high-tech DC. Once again, innovation is afoot in our facility, where associates have been working alongside a new autonomous forklift system that’s bolstering their skills and bettering their jobs while building our business. After a 16-month proof of concept, I’m proud to announce Walmart is taking another step into the future, rolling 19 autonomous forklifts across four high-tech DCs, with the potential for more as we evaluate the benefits to our associates and operations. I believe these benefits will be wide ranging. And I should know – I’ve seen them firsthand.
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U.S. Postal Service Recommends New Prices for July 2024

The U. S. Postal Service filed notice with the Postal Regulatory Commission of mailing services price changes to take effect July 14, 2024. The new rates include a 5-cent increase in the price of a First-Class Mail Forever stamp from 68 cents to 73 cents. The proposed adjustments, approved by the governors of the Postal Service, would raise mailing services product prices approximately 7.8 percent. If favorably reviewed by the commission, the price changes would include: U.S. Postal Service Recommends New Prices for July 2024: Product - Current Price - Planned Price: *Letters (1 oz.) - 68 cents - 73 cents; *Letters (metered 1 oz.) - 64 cents - 69 cents *Domestic Postcards - 53 cents - 56 cents; *International Postcards - $1.55 - $1.65; *International Letter (1 oz.) - $1.55 - $1.65.
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O’Rourke Media Group Buys Pennsylvania Newspapers (mediapost.com)

O’Rourke Media Group, based in Gilbert, Arizona, has acquired Times Publishing Newspapers in Bucks County, Pennsylvania. Times Publishing publishes Doylestown Observer, Fairless Focus, Langhorne Ledger, Morrisville Times, Newtown Gazette, Northampton Herald, New Hope News, Lower Southampton Spirit, Warwick Journal and Yardley Voice. These newspapers are delivered through the post office to over 120,000 households, 11 months per year. O’Rourke Media Group operates newspapers, websites and other publications in Delaware, Virginia and Vermont.
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HMH Named Finalist in Nine 2024 CODiE Award Categories

Learning technology company HMH has been named a finalist in nine categories for the 2024 CODiE Awards, including “Best Suite of Connected/Integrated Solutions” for its comprehensive core, intervention, assessment and professional learning offerings. Presented by the Software & Information Industry Association (SIIA), the CODiE Awards honor excellence in leading technology products and services, with awards given to products demonstrating innovation, vision and overall industry impact. “At HMH, we are focused on simplifying educators’ lives and creating meaningful learning experiences that improve outcomes for all students,” said Jack Lynch, President and CEO, HMH. “We believe that transformative edtech prioritizes human connection and community by extending teachers’ capabilities so they can focus on what matters most—their students. We are honored to be recognized for our comprehensive and connected solutions.”
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Amazon is Working to Reduce Overreliance on its Signature Brown Boxes (mytotalretail.com)

Every year, the U.S. goes through enough cardboard boxes for shipping to pave a one-mile-wide road from New York City to Los Angeles three times, or build a mile-high cardboard wall around the entire continental U.S. Getting rid of overreliance on Amazon.com's signature brown box is a key goal of the retail giant and its consumer partners, reports CNBC. In 2022, 11 percent of Amazon orders worldwide were sent in original manufacturer packaging. The company has yet to release its 2023 figure for the initiative designed to get rid of Amazon’s signature brown box, called the Ships in Product Packaging program. Total Retail's Take: The abundance of packaging needed to keep up with consumers' e-commerce purchases only continues to grow; however, more retailers and brands are now working to address the issue. Amazon initially launched the Ships in Product Packaging program in 2023 for vendors, and in February 2024 opened it to sellers. It identifies products that might work, contacts vendors and then, to ensure that packages won’t be damaged during delivery, Amazon works with those companies to test product packaging. Some companies that sell on Amazon say they will no longer develop new products that can’t be shipped without additional Amazon boxing.
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Bauer Media Group shortlisted at Newspaper and Magazine Awards 2024

The shortlist for the prestigious Newspaper and Magazine Awards (NME) has been announced, with two Bauer titles being nominated. Eclipse Mega Monthly Wordsearch is shortlisted for Newsstand Magazine of the Year – General for the second year in a row and Take a Break Puzzle Annual has been nominated for in the new category, Bookazine of the Year. With regards to the two nominations, John Simmonds, Publisher of Puzzles Titles comments “It’s amazing to have two titles from the puzzle portfolio shortlisted for this year’s NMA Awards. 2023 was a great year for our puzzle brands – a year in which Take a Break Puzzles became the biggest selling puzzle brand in the UK. Being nominated in these two categories is a reflection of the hard work of the teams involved, not just in these two titles, but across all of the portfolio.”
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Publishing Sees Higher Subscriber Growth Than Digital Media And Entertainment (mediapost.com)

The digital media and entertainment industry has seen a 124% increase in subscribers since 2020. But that is overshadowed by digital publishing, which enjoyed a 536% increase in subscribers during the same time period, according to a new benchmarking report from Recurly. At the same time, churn rates have increased to 6.9% for digital media and entertainment, the result of subscription fatigue and increased competition. However, digital publishing experienced a 3.9% rate, probably because of less competition and higher brand loyalty.
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FedEx Statement Regarding Expiration of USPS Contract

In a Form 8-K filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission on April 1, 2024, FedEx Corporation announced the agreement between FedEx Express and the United States Postal Service (“USPS”) for domestic transportation services will expire by its terms on September 29, 2024. This decision was made on March 29, 2024, following extensive discussions. FedEx and the United States Postal Service have had a long and productive relationship for more than 20 years. Over time, our respective strategies have shifted as we transform our networks and operations for the future. We have long said we would extend the contract with the USPS if we could agree to commercial terms in the best interests of FedEx shareholders. Although we were unable to reach mutually agreeable terms, we remain committed to delivering outstanding service through the completion of our contract in September.
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UPS Announces Significant Partnership Expansion with USPS

UPS announced the company has been awarded a significant air cargo contract by the United States Postal Service (USPS). This award is effective immediately and greatly expands the existing relationship between the two organizations. Following a transition period, UPS will become the USPS’s primary air cargo provider and move the majority of USPS air cargo in the US. “Together UPS and USPS have developed an innovative solution that is mutually beneficial and complements our unique, reliable and efficient integrated network,” said UPS Chief Executive Officer Carol B. Tomé.
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AAP Preliminary Report Puts Religion Book Sales up 7.8% in 2023 (publishersweekly.com)

Sales of religious books at companies that report results to the Association of American Publishers’ StatShot program rose 7.8% last year over 2022, hitting $819.7 million. All formats expect e-books had an increase. The biggest gain was in trade paperback where sales increased 11.1%. Hardcover sales rose 6.7% and accounted for 60.1% of segment sales last year, roughly even compared to 2022. On the digital side, sales of digital audiobooks rose 8.5%, but e-book sales fell 3.3%.
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PRC Issues Report Evaluating USPS Service Levels and Rates

The Commission’s primary areas of review, its findings, as well as recommendations and directives, include: The Commission finds that all workshare discounts in effect in FY 2023 were in compliance at the time they were introduced in rate adjustment proceedings based on the most recent avoided costs available at the time. The Commission finds the Periodicals class, and both products within it, were non-compensatory in FY 2023. Additionally, the Commission identifies the following non-compensatory products in compensatory classes: (1) USPS Marketing Mail Flats, (2) USPS Marketing Mail Carrier Route, and (3) Media Mail/Library Mail. The Commission notes that two classes were fully compensatory in FY 2023, with both the class and all products within the class covering attributable costs: First-Class Mail and Special Services. Taken together, the Postal Service lost $1.34 billion in FY 2023 from non-compensatory classes and products. The Commission’s review of Competitive products finds that revenues for four Competitive products with rates of general applicability did not cover attributable costs and, therefore, did not comply with 39 U.S.C. § 3633(a)(2). The Commission also finds that the Postal Service’s Interagency Agreements provided a net contribution to the Postal Service in compliance with 39 U.S.C. § 3704.
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Maine Newspaper Publisher Buys Building To House The Titles (mediapost.com)

Bucking the trend of newspapers selling off real estate, Reade Brower, publisher of The Courier-Gazette, Camden Herald, Republican Journal and Free Press, is buying a two-story building in Camden, Maine. The newspaper operations could move into the location on Mechanic Street as early as this summer. Brower plans to use the second floor for the newspapers for Islandport Press, a book publication firm, and for Mail Maine, his direct mail marketing company, according to an article by Daniel Dunkle, executive editor of the newspapers.
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Gannett Announces Further Debt Reduction

Gannett Co., Inc. announced it will repurchase approximately $13.0 million of 6.00% first lien notes due November 1, 2026 (the "2026 Senior Notes") for approximately $12.0 million, representing a discount to par value. The transaction is expected to close on March 28, 2024. In connection with the repurchase of the 2026 Senior Notes, the Company will receive a waiver from certain lenders under its five-year senior secured term loan facility that will reduce the scheduled amortization payment for the fiscal quarter ending March 31, 2024 payable to those lenders by the amount spent by the Company to repurchase the 2026 Senior Notes. "By working with our lenders, we are continuing to opportunistically take out senior notes below par value, and this latest repurchase builds upon the agreements announced in November and September of 2023," said Michael Reed, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer. "We expect debt reduction and improvement in our capital structure to remain our primary use of capital allocation, and as a result, we expect to repay at least $110 million in 2024 through non-strategic asset dispositions and continued free cash flow improvement."
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AAP December 2023 StatShot Report: Overall Publishing Industry Up 0.4% for Calendar Year 2023

The Association of American Publishers released its StatShot report for December 2023 reflecting reported revenue for Trade (Consumer Books), Religious Presses, Higher Education Course Materials, and Professional Publishing. Total revenues across all categories for December 2023 were down 2.5% as compared to December 2022, coming in at $920.7 million. Year-to-date revenues were up 0.4%, at $12.6 billion for the year of 2023. Trade revenues were down 0.3%, at $8.9 billion for the calendar year. Hardback revenues were up 0.4%, coming in at $3.3 billion; Paperbacks were down 2.0%, with $3.1 billion in revenue; Mass Market was down 22.9% to $140.0 million; and Special Bindings were up 2.2%, with $210.0 million in revenue.
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FedEx Reports Higher Third Quarter Diluted EPS of $3.51

FedEx Ground operating results increased due to lower structural costs resulting from DRIVE initiatives, higher base yield, and reduced self-insurance costs. Cost per package was flat, as lower line-haul expense and improved dock productivity offset higher first- and last-mile costs. FedEx Freight operating results decreased due to lower fuel surcharges, reduced weight per shipment and lower shipments, partially offset by higher base yield and the benefit from one additional operating day. Last year's third quarter operating income included a $30 million gain on the sale of a facility. The company completed a $1 billion accelerated share repurchase (ASR) transaction during the quarter. Approximately 4.1 million shares were delivered under the ASR agreement. The year-to-date decrease in outstanding shares benefited third quarter results by $0.09 per diluted share.
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NRF forecasts nonstore sales will grow up to 9% in 2024

The National Retail Federation (NRF) shared its forecast on the state of U.S. retail and consumers in 2024. The organization predicted that things would largely continue on the same track as 2023. “The resiliency of consumers continues to power the American economy, and we are confident there will be moderate but steady growth through the end of the year,” NRF president and CEO Matthew Shay said in a virtual panel on March 20. “Successful retailers offer consumers products and services when, where and how they want to shop with prices they want to pay.” The group invited industry experts and retail leaders to share more about what they expect to see in 2024.
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USPS Economic Analysis Used to Support Rate Hikes

Keep US Posted — a nonprofit advocacy group of consumers, nonprofits, newspapers, greeting card publishers, magazines, catalogs and small businesses — is calling attention to new analysis, which shows that U.S. Postal Service’s practice of raising mailing rates every six months is based on flawed economic forecasting that greatly underestimates the rate hikes’ impact on lost mail volume. The report, which was commissioned by the Greeting Card Association and the Association for Postal Commerce (PostCom), has been published just weeks before USPS is expected to ask the Postal Regulatory Commission to approve the sixth stamp hike in just two years, likely occurring in July. According to the report, USPS is basing stamp hikes on a demand model which underestimates the elasticities (or price sensitivity) of its consumers —relying too heavily on historical data, among other issues.
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Ohio Approves Savvas Learning Company’s myView Literacy with its Science of Reading-Based Instruction for K-5 Classrooms

Savvas Learning Company, a next-generation K-12 learning solutions leader, is excited to announce that myView Literacy © 2025, its leading K-5 core English Language Arts (ELA) program, and Savvas Essentials: Foundational Reading, its high-quality, supplemental K-2 literacy program — both grounded in the Science of Reading — have been approved for statewide adoption by the Ohio Department of Education and Workforce. After an extensive review process of core literacy and supplemental programs, state education officials placed myView Literacy and Savvas Essentials: Foundational Reading on their Ohio Approved List of Core Curriculum and Instructional Materials, determining that both programs fully met Ohio's Learning Standards for English Language Arts as well as alignment with the Science of Reading and strategies for effective literacy instruction.
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How important is sustainability to shoppers? (chainstoreage.com)

Sustainability remains a top priority for consumers, with 78% of respondents reporting that sustainability concerns are very or somewhat important to them when choosing to buy a product or shop at a retailer, according to results of the third annual Blue Yonder Consumer Sustainability Survey. Seven-in-10 respondents indicated that they have shopped at a retailer promoting their products as sustainable at least once or more in the past six months, which is slightly down from the 74% who reported doing so in the 2023 and 2022 editions of the survey. Close to half (47%) of respondents reported that their interest in shopping sustainably has greatly or slightly increased in the last year, while 40% of respondents said they would pay up to an additional 5% and 25% said they would pay an additional 10% or more.
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Adobe Announces New $25 Billion Stock Repurchase Program

Adobe announced that its board of directors has approved a new stock repurchase authorization, granting the company authority to repurchase up to $25 billion in common stock through March 14, 2028. Under the program, which is designed to return value to Adobe’s stockholders, minimize dilution from stock issuances, and reduce share count over time, the company may repurchase shares in the open market and enter into structured repurchase agreements with third parties. “Our new $25 billion share repurchase authorization underscores what a special company Adobe is, with the profitability and cash flows to drive growth and invest in innovation while returning significant capital to our shareholders,” said Dan Durn, executive vice president and CFO, Adobe.
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Adobe Reports Record Revenue in Q1 Fiscal 2024

First Quarter Fiscal Year 2024 Financial Highlights: *Adobe achieved revenue of $5.18 billion in its first quarter of fiscal year 2024, which represents 11 percent year-over-year growth or 12 percent in constant currency. Diluted earnings per share was $1.36 on a GAAP basis and $4.48 on a non-GAAP basis. *GAAP operating income in the first quarter was $907 million and non-GAAP operating income was $2.47 billion. GAAP net income was $620 million and non-GAAP net income was $2.05 billion. *Cash flows from operations were $1.17 billion.
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ALA Reports Record Spike in Book Titles Challenged in 2023 (publishersweekly.com)

The American Library Association announced today that the number of unique titles targeted for censorship surged 65% in 2023 compared to 2022, once again hitting record levels. In a release, ALA officials said that 4,240 unique book titles were reported challenged in schools and libraries in 2023, a sharp increase over 2022, when 2,571 unique titles were targeted for removal. ALA also reported 1,247 tracked challenges in 2023, which is down slightly from 1,269 challenges in 2022. But ALA officials stressed that the number does not reflect decreasing challenges, noting that prior to 2021, the vast majority of tracked challenges to library resources came from individuals seeking to remove or restrict access to a single book. Now, as result of an organized political movement and sharing book lists compiled by various groups, the overwhelming majority of tracked challenges come from groups and involve multiple titles.
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USPS And USPIS Continue Nationwide Campaign to Combat Postal Crime and Protect Postal Employees

The U.S Postal Service (USPS) and U.S. Postal Inspection Service (USPIS) announced an update on Project Safe Delivery, a joint initiative to protect postal employees and secure the nation’s mail and packages. The initiative was launched in May 2023 in direct response to rising crime across the nation that has led to increased threats and attacks on letter carriers and mail theft incidents. In February, USPIS completed a second law enforcement surge in San Francisco as a part of this nationwide effort by USPIS and USPS to protect both postal employees and the integrity of the postal system. Since the launch of Project Safe Delivery, Inspection Service personnel have conducted more than 5,500 mail theft, and violent crime prevention activities nationwide.
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Kohl’s Reports Fourth Quarter and Full Year Fiscal 2023 Financial Results

Fourth Quarter 2023 Results: Net sales decreased 1.1% year-over-year, to $5.7 billion. The fourth quarter included net sales of approximately $164 million from the 14th week. Comparable sales, which compare the 13-week period ending January 27, 2024 versus the 13-week period ended January 28, 2023, decreased 4.3%. Operating income was $299 million compared to $302 million loss in the prior year. As a percentage of total revenue, operating income was 5.0%, an increase of 1,005 basis points year-over-year. Net income was $186 million, or $1.67 per diluted share. This compares to net loss of $273 million, or ($2.49) per diluted share in the prior year.
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Kohl’s and WHP Global Announce New Strategic Partnership for Babies“R”Us

Kohl’s announced a new partnership with WHP Global, the owner of the Babies“R”Us® brand, to bring baby gear, furniture, activity, and more to millions of growing families across the country, broadening the retailer’s reach with younger customers. The first Babies“R”Us shops will open in Kohl’s this August, with plans to roll out to approximately 200 stores in fall 2024. Customers will also be able to shop an expanded assortment of baby products on Kohls.com and take advantage of the Babies“R”Us at Kohl’s registry to easily build and share gift lists. “Evolving our assortment and bringing more relevant product to the millions of customers we serve is a core focus as we continue to deliver on Kohl’s broader growth strategy,” said Tom Kingsbury, Kohl’s chief executive officer. “We see significant opportunity in the baby gear category, and partnering with Babies“R”Us is another example of how we are finding new ways to optimize our assortment and further establish Kohl’s as the go-to brand for families.”
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Costco Wholesale Corporation Reports Second Quarter and Year-to-Date Operating Results for Fiscal 2024 and February Sales Results

Costco Wholesale Corporation announced its operating results for the second quarter (twelve weeks) and the first 24 weeks of fiscal 2024, ended February 18, 2024. Net sales for the quarter increased 5.7 percent, to $57.33 billion, from $54.24 billion last year. Net sales for the first 24 weeks increased 5.9 percent, to $114.05 billion, from $107.68 billion last year. Net sales for the Company were negatively impacted by approximately one and one-half percent for the quarter and by approximately one-half percent for the first 24 weeks of fiscal 2024 from the shift of the fiscal calendar, as a result of the fifty-third week last year.
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Gap Inc. Reports Fourth Quarter and Fiscal 2023 Results

Fourth Quarter Fiscal 2023 - Financial Results: *Net sales of $4.3 billion were up 1% compared to last year, inclusive of an estimated 2 percentage points of negative impact from the sale of Gap China. The addition of the 53rd week contributed approximately 4 percentage points of growth to the fourth quarter. -Comparable sales were flat year-over-year. -Store sales increased 4% compared to last year. -Online sales decreased 2% compared to last year and represented 40% of total net sales. *Gross margin was 38.9%, an increase of 530 basis points versus last year. -Merchandise margin increased 500 basis points versus last year primarily driven by lower commodity costs and improved promotional activity during the quarter. -Rent, occupancy, and depreciation (ROD) as a percent of sales leveraged 30 basis points versus last year. *Net income of $185 million; diluted earnings per share of $0.49.
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BJ’s to open 12 new stores in 2024; will enter new state next year (chainstoreage.com)

The Massachusetts-based membership warehouse club chain will open its first club in Kentucky, in Louisville, in early 2025. Located near Jefferson Mall, the upcoming location will also include a BJ’s Gas station. The planned entrance into Kentucky, which will be BJ's 21st state, continues the chain’s growth. The company expanded into the nearby states of Tennessee and Alabama in 2023, and at the start of this year, the chain opened its 37th club in Florida. Most recently, in February, BJ’s opened its third location in Tennessee, in Goodlettsville.
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Wiley Reports Third Quarter 2024 Results

*GAAP Results: Revenue of $461 million (-6%), Operating loss of $46 million (+$21 million), and EPS loss of $2.08 (-$0.79). GAAP revenue decrease due to completed divestiture and declines in other held for sale businesses. GAAP results impacted by charges related to held for sale or sold assets, including goodwill and held for sale impairments of $82 million and $26 million, respectively, as well as a loss on a completed divestiture of $26 million. The Company also recorded restructuring charges of $15 million. “As we finish out the year, we’re increasingly confident in our underlying momentum and recovery in Research and continued outperformance in Learning,” said Matthew Kissner, Interim President and CEO. “We’ve moved decisively on our improvement and optimization plans and expect a strong fourth quarter as Research continues to recover, Learning continues to outperform, and in-year cost savings accelerate. Our disciplined execution and positive momentum are allowing us to raise our earnings guidance this year and set us up well for material performance and profit improvement in Fiscal 2025 and 2026.”
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Nordstrom Reports Fourth Quarter 2023 Earnings

For the 53-week fiscal year ended February 3, 2024, net earnings were $134 million and diluted EPS was $0.82, with earnings before interest and taxes ("EBIT") of $251 million, or 1.8 percent of sales. Excluding charges related to the wind-down of Canadian operations reported in the first and third quarters and a supply chain asset impairment charge in the fourth quarter, adjusted EBIT was $567 million, or 4.0 percent of sales, and adjusted EPS was $2.12 for fiscal 2023.1 For the fourth quarter, total Company net sales increased 2.2 percent versus the same period in fiscal 2022, inclusive of approximately $190 million related to the 53rd week, and gross merchandise value ("GMV") increased 2.0 percent. Nordstrom banner net sales decreased 3.0 percent and GMV decreased 3.4 percent compared with the fourth quarter of 2022. Net sales for Nordstrom Rack increased 14.6 percent.
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Association of American Publishers Announces Finalists and Category Winners for 2024 PROSE Awards

“The PROSE Awards 2024 Finalists and Category Award winners illustrate the extraordinary depth, breadth and complexity of scholarly authorship and publishing,” commented Syreeta Swann, AAP’s Chief Operating Officer. “We are pleased to honor these works, and delighted to report that the standard for scholarly works has never been higher.” “This year’s PROSE Awards were one of the most competitive to date, highlighting the broad array of high-quality scholarly works available to readers,” commented Dr. Nigel Fletcher-Jones, PROSE Awards Chief Judge. “We look forward to announcing the R.R. Hawkins Award Winner and Awards for Excellence winners, which continue to expand expectations of what scholarly publishing can be.” The 41 Category Winners will now be eligible for the next level of PROSE honors – the Awards for Excellence winners, which will be announced in the coming weeks.
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Indiana Department of Education Approves Savvas Learning Company’s myView Literacy

Savvas Learning Company, a next-generation K-12 learning solutions leader, is excited to announce that myView Literacy © 2025, its leading K-5 core English Language Arts (ELA) program that is grounded in the Science of Reading, has been approved for statewide adoption by the Indiana Department of Education (IDOE). After an extensive review process, IDOE officials placed myView Literacy on their Indiana High-Quality Curricular Materials Advisory List, determining that myView fully met the state’s 2023 Indiana Academic Standards and its literacy standards aligned to the Science of Reading. Combining powerful Science of Reading-based instruction with engaging student-centered practice opportunities, myView Literacy is designed to develop strong readers and writers, improving learning outcomes for all students. The program features exciting authentic literature and interactive resources, and its daily foundational-skills instruction follows an easy-to-teach sequence that’s proven to increase reading achievement and close skills gaps.
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Savvas Learning Company Named to the 2024 GSV 150 of Top-Growth Companies

Savvas Learning Company, a next-generation K-12 learning solutions leader, is excited to announce that it has been named to the 2024 edition of the GSV 150, an annual list of the top 150 private companies transforming digital learning and workforce skills. This is the second year in a row that Savvas has been named to the GSV 150. “At Savvas, we are committed to developing innovative learning solutions that are powered by the most advanced technology to help educators meet the needs of all students,” said Bethlam Forsa, CEO of Savvas Learning Company. “Savvas is honored to be recognized among the exceptional companies on the GSV 150 who are champions of educational technology — including new AI-enabled systems — to make for a richer, more personalized teaching and learning experience for all.”
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HMH Acquires Award-Winning Software Company Writable

Learning technology company HMH today announced it has acquired award-winning software company Writable, building on a longstanding partnership between the organizations that includes the integration of Writable’s research-backed writing assessment and practice solution with HMH’s core ELA offerings for grades 3-12. With the acquisition of Writable, HMH will also establish HMH Labs, a new incubation team focused on the development and customer experience of emerging technologies, including generative AI, in support of HMH’s high-tech, high-touch vision for K-12 learning. Led by Writable CEO and co-founder Andrew Goldman, who will become Executive Vice President of HMH Labs, the group will expand upon and support HMH’s focus on innovative technology and continue to develop Writable.
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Macy’s, Inc. Reports Fourth Quarter and Full-Year 2023 Results

*Net sales of $8.1 billion, down 1.7% versus the fourth quarter of 2022. Digital sales decreased 4% versus the fourth quarter of 2022. Brick-and-mortar sales were roughly flat versus the fourth quarter of 2022.*Comparable sales, on a 13-week basis, were down 5.4% on an owned basis and down 4.2% on an owned-plus-licensed basis. *Highlights of the company's nameplates include: Macy’s comparable sales, on a 13-week basis, were down 6.0% on an owned basis and down 4.7%, on an owned-plus-licensed basis. *Bloomingdale’s comparable sales, on a 13-week basis, were down 1.5% on an owned basis and down 1.6% on an owned-plus-licensed basis. *Bluemercury comparable sales, on a 13-week basis, were up 2.3% on an owned basis. *Gross margin for the quarter was 37.5%, up from 34.1% in the fourth quarter of 2022.
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Gannett Announces 2023 Results

"In 2023, we made excellent progress executing on our strategy to drive our digital transformation, resulting in total digital revenues exceeding 41% of total revenues in the fourth quarter, and amounting to nearly $1.1 billion for the year. Over the past year, we’ve expanded our digital audience, improved engagement, grown the monetization of our audience, and driven significantly improved financial results over the prior year. Our digital-only subscription revenues surpassed $150 million in 2023, with total digital-only average revenue per user reaching a new high. Also, our partnership strategy increased our overall digital monetization, and importantly, we expect to generate $20 million in high margin revenue from our partnerships in 2024," said Michael Reed, Gannett Chairman, and Chief Executive Officer. "In 2023, we achieved full year growth in both Adjusted EBITDA and free cash flow, representing an important change in trajectory compared to last year's declines. We also remained focused on improving our capital structure and, with over $140 million in debt repayments in 2023, we were able to significantly reduce our leverage during the year. As these results show, we are building momentum toward a sustainable digital growth business, with a strong balance sheet."
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REI Co-op adventure travel adds 10 new trips to meet demand for most popular destinations

Leading adventure travel operator REI Co-op added 10 trips as part of its expansion to meet demand of its most popular destinations and introduced new itineraries to California’s wine country, Maine’s 100-Mile Wilderness, the Pacific Northwest and more. At the same time, REI purchased 20 acres near the Grand Canyon to build its latest signature camp, which will open in spring 2025. “For more than three decades, we’ve led trips to the some of the most remote and storied locales in the U.S. and Canada. Each REI adventure trip is an immersive experience that our guests will remember for a lifetime,” said Mark Seidl, divisional vice president of REI Experiences. “Our expansion reflects the trust instilled in our brand to offer unmatched small group adventure travel from coast to coast.”
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HMH Launches Immersive and Dynamic Learning Experience with HMH Classcraft

Learning technology company HMH announced HMH Classcraft, which facilitates immersive and dynamic learning experiences that help teachers deliver engaging, standards-aligned, high-impact and responsive instruction in real time. Classcraft addresses some of the most pressing and time-consuming issues facing educators today—the challenge of managing myriad digital solutions and hours of time spent planning, finding the right resources, and delivering instruction to support all levels of learners within the classroom. “Teaching is an art, and increasingly, educators must wade through a complex world of point solutions to do their jobs. This takes time and focus away from meaningful classroom connection. With Classcraft, we are simplifying the educator experience with easy-to-use, integrated classroom management capabilities,” said Jim O’Neill, HMH Executive Vice President and General Manager, Core Solutions.
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PRC Outlines Activities in FY 2023 Annual Report to the President and Congress

In addition to reviewing and approving proposed rate changes for Market Dominant and Competitive products, new product proposals, and formal complaint adjudication, the Commission performed new activities as dictated by the Postal Service Reform Act (PSRA) and beyond. In FY 2023, the Commission: *Issued a Flats Operation Study with principal findings as required by the PSRA *Published reports that (1) reviewed the Postal Service's compliance with pricing and service standards, (2) provided an in-depth analysis of the Postal Service’s finances, and (3) evaluated whether the Postal Service met its performance goals as required under the law *Successfully implemented several of its strategic goals in its 2023-2028 Strategic Plan. In particular, the Commission completed a comprehensive stakeholder analysis that informed new activities currently underway surrounding the Commission’s engagement with stakeholders and the general public *Initiated a Public Inquiry Docket to examine the recent and planned network changes associated with the Postal Service’s Delivering for America Plan *Presided over rulemakings related to Commission processes and activities
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Study Exposes High Cost Of Pharmacies Printing Medical Information Leaflets

MLPS (Medical Leaflet = Patient Safety), a subgroup of the European Carton Manufacturers Association (ECMA), is releasing a study today, shedding light on the potential economic costs associated with the proposed use of Print on Demand (PoD) leaflets in the pharmaceutical legislation revision. With the European Commission’s proposal allowing countries to decide on the format of medical leaflets, MLPS underscores the necessity of understanding the financial implications of this decision. The study, commissioned by MLPS, addresses a critical question left unresolved in the proposed Directive: the enormous total cost implications of implementing PoD leaflets alongside electronic Product Information (ePI). The study’s conservative quantification provides stakeholders with valuable insights into the economic impacts of PoD leaflets. The estimated total cost of PoD leaflets across Europe-27 ranges from €1.680 billion to €3.495 billion annually, depending on whether leaflets are printed in black or four-color ink. It is unclear who will bear these costs, which are currently borne by the pharma industry.
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S&P Global agrees to acquire Visible Alpha

S&P Global announced an agreement to acquire Visible Alpha, the financial technology provider of deep industry and segment consensus data, sell-side analyst models and analytics from high-quality, exclusive sources. The acquisition will create a premium offering of fundamental investment research capabilities on S&P Global Market Intelligence's Capital IQ Pro platform. The combination of Visible Alpha with S&P Capital IQ Pro, the flagship S&P Global platform for research and analysis across institutional and corporate markets, reflects S&P Global's continued commitment to be the foremost provider in this space. Founded in 2015, Visible Alpha is a financial technology firm that provides consensus estimates and analytics from in-depth sell-side analyst models, research reports and corporate access events and distributes the data through a variety of distribution channels including a web-based platform, APIs and Feeds. Visible Alpha enhances the investment research process by extracting meaningful value from key sell-side data and analytics, including full working models from partnerships with approximately two hundred of the world's premier investment research organizations.
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Adobe Brings Conversational AI to Trillions of PDFs with the New AI Assistant in Reader and Acrobat

Adobe introduced AI Assistant in beta, a new generative AI-powered conversational engine in Reader and Acrobat. Deeply integrated into Reader and Acrobat workflows, AI Assistant instantly generates summaries and insights from long documents, answers questions and formats information for sharing in emails, reports and presentations. AI Assistant is bringing generative AI to the masses, unlocking new value from the information inside the approximately 3 trillion PDFs in the world. AI Assistant leverages the same artificial intelligence and machine learning models behind Acrobat Liquid Mode, the award-winning technology that supports responsive reading experiences for PDFs on mobile. These proprietary models provide a deep understanding of PDF structure and content, enhancing quality and reliability in AI Assistant outputs.
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Fremantle Acquires Asacha Media Group

RTL Group subsidiary Fremantle is acquiring Asacha Media Group, a European production group based in Paris. The sellers are the company’s founders and managers and the investment company Oaktree Capital Management. Asacha owns majority shares in a total of eight award-winning production companies in France, Italy and the U.K., which produce series, films, shows, reality formats and documentaries for a wide range of clients. Under the terms of the agreement, Fremantle has the option to acquire the outstanding shares in the eight production companies over the next few years. The transaction is expected to close in the second quarter of 2024. The acquisition of Asacha Media Group follows Fremantle’s recent acquisition of an 80-percent majority stake in the Singapore-based production company Beach House Pictures, which closed on February 8. Under the agreement, Fremantle has the option to fully acquire Beach House after 2027. For both acquisitions combined, RTL Group will invest over €200 million.
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Walmart Agrees to Acquire VIZIO HOLDING CORP.

Walmart and VIZIO announced they have entered into an agreement for Walmart to acquire VIZIO for $11.50 per share in cash, equating to a fully diluted equity value of approximately $2.3 billion. The acquisition of VIZIO and its SmartCast Operating System (OS) would enable Walmart to connect with and serve its customers in new ways including innovative television and in-home entertainment and media experiences. It would also create new opportunities to help advertisers connect with customers, empowering brands with differentiated and compelling opportunities to engage at scale and to realize greater impact from their advertising spend with Walmart. The combination would be expected to further accelerate Walmart’s media business in the U.S., Walmart Connect, bringing together VIZIO's advertising solutions business with Walmart’s reach and capabilities. These benefits would be further strengthened by the growth of connected TV platforms and Walmart’s industry-leading TV panel sales.
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Bauer Media UK’s Audited Circulation Figures

Bauer Media Group has posted its annual circulation figures for its UK Publishing business for 2023. The figures show that Bauer’s portfolio of brands retained their significant newsstand sales while continuing to expand their digital presence. Commenting on the results, Chris Duncan, Bauer Media’s CEO of UK Publishing said: “We are extremely proud to see Bauer retain its position as the UK’s biggest publisher of consumer magazines with a set of results that demonstrate the wide reach of our brand portfolio, both in print and digitally. Our continued position as the leader across many markets is a true testament to our teams’ ability to produce content that consistently attracts highly engaged and loyal audiences.” “A heartfelt thanks goes out to all our hardworking teams, retailers and advertisers, and our millions of loyal readers. Bauer remains committed to working with our partners to continue to innovate and evolve our exceptional content in 2024.”
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Shoe Carnival acquires Rogan’s Shoes (digitalcommerce360.com)

Shoe Carnival acquired Rogan’s Shoes, the retailer announced Feb. 13. The deal was worth $45 million, it said in a statement. Shoe Carnival is No. 335 in the Top 1000. The Digital Commerce 360 database ranks North America’s leading retailers by online sales. The footwear retailer expects to see benefits from the acquisition in its 2024 fiscal year. Adding Rogan’s to Shoe Carnival’s portfolio will generate approximately $84 million in sales and $10 million in operating income in 2024, the retailer said. That doesn’t include transaction and integration costs. Rogan’s is 53 years old, with 28 locations across Wisconsin, Illinois and Minnesota. The acquisition makes Shoe Carnival the market leader in Wisconsin and establishes a store base in Minnesota.
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YETI Reports Fourth Quarter and Fiscal Year 2023 Results

Fourth Quarter 2023 Highlights *Fourth quarter net sales increased 16%; Adjusted net sales increased 6% *Fourth quarter net sales were highlighted by a 12% increase in Drinkware net sales and a 44% increase in International net sales; International adjusted net sales increased 39% *Fourth quarter EPS of $0.90 compared to loss per share of $0.32 in the prior year quarter; Adjusted EPS of $0.90, growth of 15%. Fiscal Year 2023 Highlights *Full year net sales increased 4%; Adjusted net sales increased 3% *Full year EPS increased 88% to $1.94; Adjusted EPS decreased 5% to $2.25 *Cash increased 87% to $439 million compared to Fiscal 2022
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Hearst Did Well In 2023 Despite Economic Headwinds (mediapost.com)

Despite numerous headwinds, “we achieved our second-best year ever judged by our principal measure of profitability, falling short by 2% of the record results of 2022,” writes Steven R. Swartz, president & chief executive officer, in his annual letter. Swartz adds, “A sluggish digital advertising environment, the typical cyclical effect on television station advertising in a nonelection year and continued cord-cutting in television led to profit declines in all of our consumer media sectors: Newspapers, Magazines and Television."
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Paper Greetings are America’s Calling Card

In the age of digital dominance, a surprising and heartwarming trend defies the wave—millennials’ and Gen Z’s preference for physical greeting cards. Even though these generations are digital natives, recent studies and surveys reveal that many prefer the tangible charm and personalization of paper greeting cards over their e-counterparts. According to a recent poll from online card and gift giant Shutterfly1, more than half (54%) of Americans say they still mail their greeting cards versus sending via digital and social platforms. The new survey of 2,000 U.S. adults split evenly by generation revealed that two out of three prefer to receive physical cards as opposed to digital ones, including younger respondents who are millennials (62%) or are part of Gen Z (59%). Personalization was a big deal to survey respondents, preferring to include family, vacation, or pet photos with cards.
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January online retail sales grow at much faster pace than total sales (digitalcommerce360.com)

Online retail sales grew 25.47% year over year in January, according to CNBC and the National Retail Federation’s Retail Monitor. The year’s online sales started slightly better than 2023 ended, with January sales up 0.68% month over month, according to the NRF. Meanwhile, total retail sales also grew in January (2.34% year over year), according to the Retail Monitor. Month over month, January sales were nearly flat, decreasing just 0.16%, the new report showed.
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Electronic Receipts: Two Cases Of Greenwashing, The Advertising Ethics Jury Agrees

Passed (in France) in 2020, the Anti-Waste Law For A Circular Economy (AGEC) dictates that receipts will be printed at the customer’s request, except in special circumstances. Since then, several “start-ups” have aligned themselves to electronic receipts. Taking advantage of the new law, which has been postponed several times, they have developed communication campaigns highlighting the environmental interest of not using paper receipts. Faced with this flood of greenwashing, Two Sides France submitted two case complaints that seemed fitting for the Advertising Ethics Jury. On January 31st 2024, the jury agreed with Two Sides on those cases. Aside from the fact that it’s hard to see how, if a consumer doesn’t need a paper ticket, giving them a digital ticket would be more virtuous, the communications from these companies frequently resort to clichés commonly employed to endorse digital “solutions.” Consequently, an excess of statements has emerged featuring generic ideas and sweeping statements praising the merits of avoiding paper, while omitting the environmental consequences of digital alternatives, claiming forest conservation, and asserting the positive aspects of an eco-friendly digital receipt allegedly in compliance with the above mentioned AGEC law.
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S&P Global Reports Fourth Quarter and Full-Year 2023 Results

The Company reported fourth quarter 2023 reported revenue of $3.152 billion, an increase of 7% compared to the fourth quarter of 2022. Fourth quarter GAAP net income increased 34% to $579 million and GAAP diluted earnings per share increased 38% to $1.83 driven primarily by strong Ratings growth and lower merger-related costs. Excluding the impact of Engineering Solutions (ES), revenue growth would have been 11% year over year. Adjusted net income for the fourth quarter increased 19% to $988 million and adjusted diluted earnings per share increased 23% to $3.13. For the full year 2023, reported revenue increased 12% year over year to $12.497 billion. 2023 GAAP net income decreased 19% to $2.626 billion and GAAP diluted earnings per share decreased 19% to $8.23, driven primarily by a gain on sale of assets in 2022 and restructuring costs in 2023.
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U.S. Postal Service Reports First Quarter Fiscal Year 2024 Results

The U.S. Postal Service announced its financial results for the first quarter of fiscal year 2024. The net loss for the quarter totaled $2.1 billion, compared to a net loss of $1.0 billion for the same quarter last year. Results for the quarter were negatively impacted primarily by non-cash workers’ compensation expenses due to actuarial revaluation and discount rate changes, the amortization of unfunded retiree pension liabilities, and the continued effect of inflation on operating expenses. Controllable income for the quarter was $472 million, compared to controllable income of $187 million for the same quarter last year, reflecting that the positive impacts of the Delivering for America plan are beginning to be realized. Total operating revenue was $21.6 billion for the quarter, an increase of $115 million, or 0.5 percent, compared to the same quarter last year. Revenue for the overall Shipping and Packages category increased $240 million, or 2.7 percent, on a volume increase of 98 million pieces, or 5.1 percent, compared to the same quarter last year. Marketing Mail revenue decreased $235 million, or 5.4 percent, on a volume decline of 2.4 billion pieces, or 13.5 percent, compared to the same quarter last year.
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Costco Wholesale Corporation Reports January Sales Results

Costco Wholesale Corporation reported net sales of $22.08 billion for the retail month of January, the five weeks ended February 4, 2024 an increase of 4.5 percent from $21.13 billion last year. For the 22 weeks ended February 4, 2024, the Company reported net sales of $104.94 billion, an increase of 6.0 percent from $99.00 billion for the 22 weeks of fiscal year 2023 ended January 29, 2023.
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The New York Times Company Reports Fourth-Quarter and Full-Year 2023 Results

Key Fourth Quarter Highlights • The Company added approximately 300,000 net digital-only subscribers compared with the end of the third quarter of 2023, fueled by bundle and multi-product subscriber additions • Total digital-only average revenue per user (“ARPU”) grew 3.5 percent year-over-year to $9.24 primarily as a result subscribers graduating from promotional to higher prices and price increases on tenured non-bundled subscribers • Higher digital subscribers and ARPU drove year-over-year growth in subscription revenues from digital products of 7.2 percent • Digital advertising revenues decreased 3.7 percent year-over-year largely as a result of the five fewer days in the fourth quarter of 2023 compared to 2022 as well as declines in revenue from our podcasts and creative services • Operating costs decreased 4.8 percent year-over-year and adjusted operating costs (defined below) decreased 0.7 percent, largely as a result of lower cost of revenue, partially offset by higher salesand marketing and product development costs • Operating profit of $129.0 million, a 38.7 percent increase year-over-year, with adjusted operating profit (defined below) of $154.0 million, an 8.5 percent increase year-over-year primarily as a result of higher digital subscription and other revenues as well as lower adjusted operating costs, partially offset by lower advertising revenues
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News Corp Reports Second Quarter Results for Fiscal 2024

*Second quarter revenues were $2.59 billion, a 3% increase compared to $2.52 billion in the prior year, driven by growth at the Digital Real Estate Services, Dow Jones and Book Publishing segments *Net income in the quarter was $183 million, compared to net income of $94 million in the prior year *Second quarter Total Segment EBITDA was $473 million, compared to $409 million in the prior year
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AAP November 2023 StatShot Report: Overall Publishing Industry Down 0.5% for Month of November, and Up 0.6% Year-To-Date

Total revenues across all categories for November 2023 were down 0.5% as compared to November 2022, coming in at $1.0 billion. Year-to-date revenues were up 0.6%, at $11.7 billion for the first eleven months of the year. November: Trade (Consumer Books) revenues were down 0.2% in November, coming in at $858.0 million. In terms of physical paper format revenues during the month of November, in the Trade (Consumer Books) category, Hardback revenues were up 2.0%, coming in at $368.8 million; Paperbacks were down 1.9%, with $262.5 million in revenue; Mass Market was down 53.4% to $9.1 million; and Special Bindings were up 13.8%, with $22.7 million in revenue.
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Today Media Acquires Suburban Maryland Titles (mediapost.com)

Today Media, a publisher of regional lifestyle magazines, business publications and websites in several East Coast markets, has acquired Bethesda magazine and the news site MoCo360 from Z-Pop Media, the company announced on Friday. Terms were not disclosed. Bethesda and MoCo360, which cover Montgomery County in suburban Maryland, are “a great fit” for Today Media, says Rob Martinelli, CEO of Today Media. Based in Wilmington, Delaware, Today Media publishes in four East Coast markets, including New York's Westchester County and the Hudson Valley, Delaware and suburban Philadelphia.
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Savvas Learning Company Acquires Outlier.org

Savvas Learning Company, a next-generation K-12 learning solutions leader, today announced that it has acquired Outlier.org, an edtech startup that has created a portfolio of high-quality, turnkey, online college-level courses that enable high school students to earn dual credit while never having to leave their school building. Outlier.org combines cinematic video and charismatic professors with the best in modern, evidence-based teaching techniques to virtually transport the student to a college lecture hall. Its diverse catalog of award-winning courses in the arts, humanities, social sciences, and natural sciences are taught by hand-picked, world-class instructors from NASA, MIT, Harvard, Yale, and other top institutions.
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Average Delivery Time Across Postal Service Network Remains Stable

FY24 second quarter service performance scores covering January 1 through January 26, included: *First-Class Mail: 82.7 percent of First-Class Mail delivered on time against the USPS service standard, a decrease of 3.2 percentage points from the fiscal first quarter. *Marketing Mail: 92.2 percent of Marketing Mail delivered on time against the USPS service standard, a decrease of 1.5 percentage points from the fiscal first quarter. *Periodicals: 80.2 percent of Periodicals delivered on time against the USPS service standard, consistent with performance from the fiscal first quarter.
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Cougar® Paper Trails Offers Printing Primer for Creatives

Domtar now offers the Cougar® Paper Trails printing primer to help professionals and novices find the optimal paper for their project. The Cougar® brand of uncoated paper has long been known by printers, marketers and creative professionals as the ideal medium for personal exploration and storytelling. And now, the Cougar Paper Trails printing primer offers a valuable resource to anyone new to the print industry. “We are proud to offer a new generation of advertisers, printers, designers and creatives of all kinds a user-friendly primer,” says Meredith Collins, channel marketing manager at Domtar. “Cougar Paper Trails is an easy-to-understand guide to the important characteristics of paper and the printing and finishing techniques that make creative work shine.”
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Gannett and Big Ten Conference Announce Media Partnership

Gannett Co., Inc. and the USA TODAY Network today announced a multi-year agreement to become the official content partner of the Big Ten Conference, the oldest Division I collegiate athletic conference in the United States As part of the agreement, syndicated content from across USA TODAY Network’s local network of more than 200 publications will be featured on BigTen.org. This includes content from The Columbus Dispatch, The Des Moines Register, Detroit Free Press and The Indianapolis Star among several others. USA TODAY will also continue to produce souvenir covers to commemorate the winners of the Big Ten Championship Games in football and men’s and women’s basketball. These covers are presented to athletes on the field or court after the final whistle. This tradition began last year with the Big Ten Football Championship Game and continued this year with the “A-MAIZE-ING” headline celebrating Michigan’s win in the conference title game.
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Amazon.com Announces Fourth Quarter Results

Fourth Quarter 2023 *Net sales increased 14% to $170.0 billion in the fourth quarter, compared with $149.2 billion in fourth quarter 2022. *Operating income increased to $13.2 billion in the fourth quarter, compared with $2.7 billion in fourth quarter 2022. *Net income increased to $10.6 billion in the fourth quarter, or $1.00 per diluted share, compared with $0.3 billion, or $0.03 per diluted share, in fourth quarter 2022. Full Year 2023 *Net sales increased 12% to $574.8 billion in 2023, compared with $514.0 billion in 2022. Excluding the $0.1 billion unfavorable impact from year-over-year changes in foreign exchange rates throughout the year, net sales increased 12% compared with 2022. *Operating income increased to $36.9 billion in 2023, compared with $12.2 billion in 2022. *Net income was $30.4 billion in 2023, or $2.90 per diluted share, compared with a net loss of $2.7 billion, or $0.27 per diluted share, in 2022.
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Grainger Reports Results for the Fourth Quarter and Full Year 2023

Fourth Quarter 2023 Highlights *Delivered sales of $4.0 billion, up 5.1%, or 5.5% on a daily, organic constant currency basis *Achieved reported operating margin of 13.9%, down 40 basis points, or 14.6% on an adjusted basis, up 80 basis points *Announced plans to open a new 1.2 million square-foot distribution center near Houston, Texas in 2026. Full Year 2023 Highlights *Grew sales to $16.5 billion, up 8.2%, or 9.5% on a daily, organic constant currency basis *Realized reported operating margin of 15.6%, up 110 basis points, or 15.7% on an adjusted basis, up 130 basis points
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Grainger Announces Plans for New Distribution Center Near Houston

Grainger announced plans to open a 1.2 million-square-foot distribution center (DC) in Hockley, Texas in 2026. The new "Houston Texas Distribution Center" will provide additional capacity for the company to continue delivering best-in-class, next-day complete orders to customers. Grainger plans to break ground this spring. Grainger's Houston Texas Distribution Center is expected to house more than 250,000 industrial supply items, such as hand and power tools, heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC) equipment, fluid power solutions, lighting, power transmission equipment, and motors. The company anticipates the new facility will employ approximately 400 team members within a year of opening in 2026.
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PRC Commissioners Pay a Visit to USPS Processing Plants in Georgia

Postal Regulatory Commission Vice Chairman Thomas G. Day and Commissioner Ashley E. Poling recently toured two U.S. Postal Service processing facilities to witness, first-hand, ongoing network changes made by the Postal Service as part of its Delivering for America plan. Guided by a senior postal official on January 17, Vice Chairman Day and Commissioner Poling toured the Postal Service’s newly constructed Regional Processing and Distribution Center in Palmetto, GA. The tour took place from 10 p.m. to 1:30 a.m.—peak hours for some of the busiest processing intervals and a key period for incoming and outgoing transportation. As of that date, package processing was operational, but the letter and flats operations were still undergoing installation. On January 19, the two Commissioners visited the Postal Service’s first Sortation and Delivery Center in Athens, GA. During their 6 a.m. tour, they observed the Postal Service’s delivery unit package sortation operations along with the routine preparation of mail delivery carriers for their daily routes. They also viewed the new charging infrastructure for future electric postal delivery vehicles.
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Walmart Announces 3-for-1 Stock Split

Walmart Inc. announced that it will conduct a split of its outstanding shares of common stock at a ratio of 3:1. The stock split is part of Walmart’s ongoing review of optimal trading and spread levels and its desire for its associates to feel that purchasing shares is easily within reach. More than 400,000 associates participate in Walmart’s Associate Stock Purchase Plan today, which allows eligible associates to buy stock conveniently through payroll deductions and provides a 15% company match on the first $1,800 each year. “Sam Walton believed it was important to keep our share price in a range where purchasing whole shares, rather than fractions, was accessible to all of our associates,” said Doug McMillon, President and CEO of Walmart. “Given our growth and our plans for the future, we felt it was a good time to split the stock and encourage our associates to participate in the years to come. As Sam said, ‘We’re all in this together. That’s the secret.’”
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2023 USTR Notorious Markets List Issued

The Association of American Publishers welcomed the release of the 2023 Review of Notorious Markets for Counterfeiting and Piracy by the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative (USTR). The Notorious Markets List highlights online and physical markets around the world engaged in industrial-scale copyright infringement and counterfeiting, which adversely impacts the interests of U.S. publishers, authors, and other rights holders. “The publishing industry thanks USTR and the interagency for their work in protecting the intellectual property of publishers and authors, whose livelihoods depend on the protection and enforcement of their rights,” said Lui Simpson, Senior Vice President for Global Policy at AAP. “The Notorious Markets report remains a critical tool for exposing online sites and marketplaces that traffic in infringing copies of books and journal articles.”
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Latest USPS Report Shows Sustained Service Performance

FY24 second quarter service performance scores covering January 1 through January 19, included: *First-Class Mail: 84.0 percent of First-Class Mail delivered on time against the USPS service standard, a decrease of 1.9 percentage points from the fiscal first quarter. *Marketing Mail: 92.1 percent of Marketing Mail delivered on time against the USPS service standard, a decrease of 1.6 percentage points from the fiscal first quarter. *Periodicals: 80.6 percent of Periodicals delivered on time against the USPS service standard, consistent with performance from the fiscal first quarter.
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Wiley and Vanderbilt University’s Heard Libraries Sign Agreement to Publish More Open Access Research

Wiley, one of the world’s largest publishers and a global leader in research and learning, today announced a new 5-year open access agreement with the Jean and Alexander Heard Libraries at Vanderbilt University, beginning on January 1, 2024. This transformative agreement will provide Vanderbilt University affiliates with access to Wiley’s complete journal portfolio and enable participating researchers to publish research in Wiley’s complete portfolio of nearly 2,000 hybrid and gold open access journals, including those published by Hindawi, starting January 1, 2024.
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Postal Regulatory Commission Affirms its Commitment to Timely Review of NSAs and Importance of Innovation

The Postal Regulatory Commission issued a notice today to clarify the outcome of a recent Market Dominant Negotiated Service Agreement (NSA) approved by the Commission. The Commission reaffirmed its commitment to timely review and approval of Market Dominant NSA applications that comply with the law and recognized the importance of innovation. In its request, the Postal Service stated that it intended to begin implementing the agreement “in January 2024 or shortly thereafter.” The Commission approved the Market Dominant NSA on November 22, 2023, consistent with the Postal Service’s request. On January 17, 2024, the Postal Service informed the Commission that the mailer had decided not to implement the NSA.
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Savvas Learning Company Announces New Edition of its Leading myView Literacy Program Grounded in the Science of Reading

Savvas Learning Company, a next-generation K-12 learning solutions leader, today introduced the new edition of myView Literacy, its leading K-5 core English Language Arts (ELA) program. Combining powerful Science of Reading-based instruction with engaging student-centered practice opportunities, myView Literacy © 2025 is designed to develop strong readers and writers, improving learning outcomes for all students. The new edition of myView Literacy comes at a time when the Science of Reading movement has gained national momentum, with many states now requiring the use of evidence-based strategies for teaching students to read. More and more school districts today are making it a priority to use high-quality instructional materials that not only demonstrate both efficacy and a positive impact on student achievement but also provide teachers the training and support they need to successfully implement the curriculum.
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2024 Two Sides Partners Meeting

Jonathan provided an update on Two Sides’ activity, results in 2023, and focused on the tools, resources and information that your business can use. The Love Paper campaign, focussed on improving consumer perceptions of our products, reached a milestone in 2023 with over 2,000 advertisements featured in national newspapers and magazines. This initiative reaches more than 240 million consumers, communicating the sustainable narrative of magazines, newspapers, and all paper-based products. Year after year, we are reaching a growing number of consumers, making it a focus of our ongoing efforts. Across Europe, the challenge of Greenwashing persists, with companies disseminating misleading messages that portray a digital transition as inherently better for the environment. Slogans like “Go green, go paperless” not only misguide but pose a significant threat to our industry. Two Sides actively engages businesses, brands, and organizations, urging them to refrain from making such deceptive statements regarding print and paper.
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The Page: January 2024

The latest and exciting NEW issue of The Page, the magazine produced by Two Sides to promote the sustainability and value of print, is now available! In the latest edition of The Page, we take a look at what’s in store for 2024. After a turbulent 2023, we pick the brains of our finest industry experts about their predictions for print, paper and paper-based packaging. Getting your customers’ ATTENTION and keeping it is the Holy Grail of marketing. Now attention metrics shows that print is one of the best performers. You can read more about it in the latest edition of The Page. more at: https://twosides.info/uk/the-page-january-2024
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Service Performance Remains Steady Across Postal Service Network

FY24 second quarter service performance scores covering January 1 through January 12, included: *First-Class Mail: 85.8 percent of First-Class Mail delivered on time against the USPS service standard, consistent with performance from the fiscal first quarter. *Marketing Mail: 93.7 percent of Marketing Mail delivered on time against the USPS service standard, consistent with performance from the fiscal first quarter. *Periodicals: 81.5 percent of Periodicals delivered on time against the USPS service standard, an increase of 0.8 percentage points from the fiscal first quarter.
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Country Walking launches #Walk1000Miles 2024 Challenge

Country Walking, the UK’s best-selling walking magazine has launched its annual challenge #Walk1000Miles with a dedicated 64-page supplement, available in the February issue. Founded 9 years ago by Country Walking’s Editor Guy Procter, the popular annual walking challenge encourages anyone of any age, fitness level and experience to walk 1000 miles in one year. It takes under an hour a day to reach 1000 miles in 12 months – just 2.74 miles daily – or the equivalent of Land’s End to John o’Groats the long way. Since launch, Country Walking’s #Walk1000Miles challenge has amassed more than 170k registrations and over 44,000 members to its growing Facebook community.
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Hearst Foundations Surpass $1.5 Billion in Grantmaking to Nonprofit Organizations in the United States

The Hearst Foundations announced that they have surpassed $1.5 billion in grants to over 6,400 organizations since their founding in 1946 by William Randolph Hearst. The announcement was made by Presidents of the Hearst Foundations, William R. Hearst III and Virginia Randt. Operating independently from Hearst, the Foundations are national philanthropic resources for organizations working in the fields of culture, education, health and social service. Grantmaking also includes administering two unique annual programs: the United States Senate Youth Program for high school juniors and seniors as a public service immersion in Washington D.C. and the Journalism Awards Program for undergraduates studying journalism at accredited schools of journalism.
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U.S. Postal Service Unveils First Postal Electric Vehicle Charging Stations and Electric Delivery Vehicles

The United States Postal Service (USPS), alongside White House officials, unveiled its first set of electric vehicle (EV) charging stations at its South Atlanta Sorting and Delivery Center (S&DC). Charging stations like these will be installed at hundreds of new S&DCs across the country throughout the year and will power what will be the nation’s largest EV fleet. Electrification and modernization of the Postal Service’s delivery fleet is part of the organization’s $40 billion investment strategy to upgrade and improve the USPS processing, transportation, and delivery networks. “The improvements we need to achieve in sustainability are an integral outgrowth of the broader modernization efforts we have undertaken through our 10-year Delivering for America plan,” said Postmaster General Louis DeJoy.
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Print Prospered In 2023, On Track To Repeat It This Year (mediapost.com)

Print media consumption rose in 2023, and this trend should continue in 2024, according to a study by Pew Research Center. MRI-Simmons reports that 80%+ of 100+ national magazines have lower readership than they did a decade ago. But, over the past two years, nearly 90% of those have maintained or actually increased readership. Catalogs are also growing apace. "Amazon’s Holiday Dash catalog which tops 100 pages, has been described as a mashup of the iconic Sears catalog and Highlights magazine," Pew writes.
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Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals Affirms That Texas Book Ban Law is Unconstitutional

The United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit today affirmed the preliminary injunction of the “Reader Act” (formerly HB 900) granted by Judge Alan D. Albright of the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Texas, Austin Division in a written opinion issued on September 18, 2023. The law would have required independent bookstores, national chain bookstores, large online book retailers, book publishers and other vendors to review and rate millions of books and other library materials according to sexual content if those books are sold to school libraries, and to do so according to vague labels dictated by the state without any process for judicial review. In affirming Judge Albright’s earlier ruling, Judge Don Willett of the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals noted that “Plaintiffs have an interest in selling books without being coerced to speak the State’s preferred message,” going on to say that he was “unpersuaded” by the State’s argument that the READER Act does not implicate Plaintiffs’ First Amendment rights.
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Savvas Learning Company’s SuccessMaker Meets ESSA Level 2 Requirements

Savvas Learning Company, a next-generation K-12 learning solutions leader, today announced that Successmaker, its continuously-adaptive, personalized learning math and reading programs for all K-8 students, met ESSA Level 2 evidence standards by demonstrating significantly higher math proficiency and reading gains for students. ESSA, formally known as the Every Student Succeeds Act, is the federal K-12 education law requiring that all students in America be taught to high academic standards that will prepare them to succeed in college and careers. ESSA provides states and school districts guidance as well as flexibility in selecting evidence-based learning solutions that have demonstrated a positive effect on student performance.
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Ask your member of Congress to stop unprecedented stamp hikes.

The U.S. Postal Service is raising the price of stamps AGAIN on January 21. This is the fourth increase in 18 months—the most mailing rates have increased during the U.S. Postal Service’s 248-year history. These increases have harmed mail volume and have not helped the USPS achieve financial stability. In fact, the USPS posted a $6.5 billion loss for FY2023 and is predicting a $6.3 billion loss this fiscal year. And yet, the USPS appears to be on track to raise stamp prices yet again this July. These increases pose a significant threat to consumers and businesses that rely on the USPS. Representatives Emanuel Cleaver (D-MO) and Sam Graves (R-MO) have teamed up to send a letter to the USPS Board of Governors urging them to delay any further increase this year until the effects of the unprecedented twice-a-year increases on mail volume and revenue are better understood. Keep US Posted encourages everyone who supports affordable postage and quality service to contact their members of Congress to ask them to join Rep. Cleaver and Graves in sending the letter.
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Postal Service Begins FY24 Second Quarter with Consistent Service Performance

FY24 second quarter service performance scores covering January 1 through January 5, included: *First-Class Mail: 87.5 percent of First-Class Mail delivered on time against the USPS service standard, an increase of 1.6 percentage points from the fiscal first quarter. *Marketing Mail: 93.4 percent of Marketing Mail delivered on time against the USPS service standard, consistent with performance from the fiscal first quarter. *Periodicals: 82.0 percent of Periodicals delivered on time against the USPS service standard, an increase of 1.3 percentage points from the fiscal first quarter.
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REI Co-op to open 10 stores in 2024 to better serve outdoor communities

Specialty outdoor retailer REI Co-op announced expansion plans to open 10 new stores in 2024 to better serve its members and outdoor community. Locations have been finalized for summer 2024 openings in Glendale, Arizona and Rancho Mirage, California. A store in St. George, Utah will open in fall 2025. The co-op will open its doors in formerly occupied retail spaces at Arrowhead Promenade in Glendale, The River in Rancho Mirage, and St. George Place in St. George. Each location will offer a wide assortment of apparel, gear and expertise for camping, cycling, running, fitness, hiking, climbing and more. In addition, a full-service bike shop will be staffed with technicians to tune, repair and enhance the performance of all bikes. The new Utah location will also feature a ski and snowboard shop.
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California Universities Partner with Wiley on Landmark Open Access Agreement

The 10-campus University of California system and 48 private and public academic and research institutions represented by the Statewide California Electronic Library Consortium (SCELC) have reached a new open access agreement with Wiley, one of the world's largest publishers. The three-year deal begins this month and will make more research eligible for open access publication than any partnership of its kind in California. “Some of the most groundbreaking research in the world is done right here in California, driving advances in medicine, environmental sustainability and society. I am excited about this opportunity for more California scholars, from UC and beyond, to make their work freely available so that people around the globe can benefit from and build on their discoveries,” said Maria De Prano, professor of Art History at UC Merced and chair of the UC faculty Academic Senate’s systemwide committee on library and scholarly communication. “I appreciate the partnership of our colleagues at SCELC and Wiley for making open access to California research possible at this scale.”
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North Carolina’s Firestorm Books Offers Free Books Banned in Florida

Firestorm Books, a collectively-owned radical bookstore in Asheville, N.C., has acquired 22,500 copies of 46 children's books that were banned from the Duval County Public School system in Florida. Under a campaign named "Banned Books Back!," the bookstore plans to distribute these books to children and families across the United States, starting with Florida. Last year, Duval County school administrators ordered the removal of numerous titles focused on gender issues, racism, colonialism and more. Half of the titles that were pulled focused on LGBTQIA+ topics. "When we were told that these books were at risk of being destroyed, we knew we had to act," Esmé Joy, co-owner of Firestorm Books, said.
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OverDrive: Record Number of Libraries Hit One Million Digital Lends in 2023

OverDrive reps reported this week that a record 152 library systems and consortia across seven countries—including 41 states and seven Canadian provinces—surpassed the one million digital lends benchmark in 2023, which includes e-books, digital audiobooks, and digital magazines. The numbers represent a significant jump from the 129 library systems that hit the milestone in 2022. The 152 public libraries hitting the milestone are based in the U.S., Canada, Australia, Canada, Germany, New Zealand, Singapore, the United Kingdom, and the United States.
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Conde Nast CEO Lynch Urges Congress To Act On GAI (mediapost.com)

Journalism is in jeopardy unless publishers are fairly compensated for use of their content by GAI companies, Roger Lynch, CEO of Condé Nast, argued in Congressional testimony on Wednesday. Speaking before the the Senate Judiciary Subcommittee on Privacy, Technology, and the Law, Lynch said, “We urge Congress to take immediate action to clarify that the use of publisher content for both Gen AI training and their output must be licensed and compensated.”
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Inspirit Capital Announces the Acquisition of Wiley Edge

Inspirit Capital, a UK-based investment firm, has entered into a definitive agreement with Wiley to acquire Wiley Edge (“Edge”), an early-career talent, training and placement business serving global employers. The transaction is expected to close in the first quarter of 2024, subject to satisfaction of customary closing conditions. Edge is an industry-leading provider of Hire, Train, Deploy (“HTD”) talent solutions, supporting multinational employers by sourcing, training and deploying high-potential entry-level talent on a contract-to-hire basis. Currently operating in 11 countries, the business plays an important role in addressing the enduring global skills gaps in high-demand areas of technology and business. Edge has a leading recruitment and selection operation, with access to diverse talent around the globe, and delivers bootcamp-style courses through its Academy. In addition to its core early-career HTD services, Edge also offers tailored training programs to reskill clients’ existing workforces, enhancing employee retention and helping employers address internal skill gaps in an increasingly competitive global labor market.
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AAP October 2023 StatShot Report: Overall Publishing Industry Up 1.8% for Month of October, and Up 0.7% Year-To-Date

The Association of American Publishers released its StatShot report for October 2023 reflecting reported revenue for Trade (Consumer Books), Higher Education Course Materials, and Professional Publishing. Total revenues across all categories for October 2023 were up 1.8% as compared to October 2022, coming in at $1.2 billion. Year-to-date revenues were up 0.7%, at $10.6 billion for the first ten months of the year. Trade (Consumer Books) revenues were up 1.3% in October, coming in at $975.0 million. In terms of physical paper format revenues during the month of October, in the Trade (Consumer Books) category, Hardback revenues were down 2.3%, coming in at $441.8 million; Paperbacks were up 5.5%, with $301.1 million in revenue; Mass Market was up 44.4% to $10.4 million; and Special Bindings were up 3.7%, with $25.8 million in revenue.
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URBN Reports Record Holiday Sales

Urban Outfitters, Inc. announced net sales for the two and eleven months ended December 31, 2023. Total Company net sales for the two months ended December 31, 2023, increased 10% compared to the two months ended December 31, 2022. Total Retail segment net sales increased 8%, with comparable Retail segment net sales increasing 6%. Comparable Retail segment net sales increased 20% at Free People and 14% at Anthropologie and decreased 13% at Urban Outfitters. Wholesale segment net sales increased 15% driven by an increase in Free People wholesale sales primarily due to increases in sales to department stores and specialty accounts, partially offset by a decrease in Urban Outfitters wholesale sales. Nuuly segment net sales increased 71% primarily driven by a 58% increase in our subscribers versus the end of the prior year's comparable period.
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USPS Ends First Quarter FY24 with Stable Delivery Performance

The United States Postal Service reported new delivery performance metrics for the thirteenth week of the first quarter for fiscal year 2024. The average time for the Postal Service to deliver a mailpiece or package across the nation was 2.7 days. FY24 first quarter service performance scores covering October 1 through December 29, included: *First-Class Mail: 85.4 percent of First-Class Mail delivered on time against the USPS service standard, a decrease of 5.7 percentage points from the fiscal fourth quarter. *Marketing Mail: 93.8 percent of Marketing Mail delivered on time against the USPS service standard, a decrease of 1.5 percentage points from the fiscal fourth quarter. *Periodicals: 80.8 percent of Periodicals delivered on time against the USPS service standard, a decrease of 5.2 percentage points from the fiscal fourth quarter.
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Costco Wholesale Corporation Reports December Sales Results

Costco Wholesale Corporation reported net sales of $26.15 billion for the retail month of December, the five weeks ended December 31, 2023 an increase of 9.9 percent from $23.80 billion last year. For the seventeen weeks ended December 31, 2023, the Company reported net sales of $82.86 billion, an increase of 5.9 percent from $78.26 billion for the seventeen weeks of fiscal year 2023 ended December 25, 2022. Net sales for the seventeen weeks were negatively impacted by approximately one-half to one percent from the shift of the fiscal calendar, as a result of the fifty-third week in fiscal year 2023.
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Adobe: Holiday Shopping Season Drove a Record $222.1 Billion Online

Adobe released online shopping data for the 2023 holiday season, covering the period from Nov. 1 through Dec. 31, 2023. Based on Adobe Analytics data, the report provides the most comprehensive view into U.S. e-commerce by analyzing commerce transactions online, covering over one trillion visits to U.S. retail sites, 100 million SKUs and 18 product categories. Adobe Analytics is part of Adobe Experience Cloud, relied upon by over 85% of the top 100 internet retailers in the U.S.* to deliver, measure and personalize shopping experiences online. Consumers spent $222.1 billion online from Nov. 1 to Dec. 31, up 4.9% year-over-year (YoY) and setting a new record for e-commerce. A total of $123.5 billion was spent online in the month of November (up 6% YoY), bolstered by a strong Cyber Week—the five days between Thanksgiving and Cyber Monday—which drove $38 billion in spend online (up 7.8% YoY). In December, consumers spent a total of $98.6 billion online (up 3.7% YoY), driven in part by discounts that lingered past Cyber Monday.
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New Luxury Lifestyle Publication To Debut In Florida (mediapost.com)by Ray Schultz , 10 hours ago

Wellington, Florida will soon be home to a luxury magazine called Lux Wellington. It will appear in February. The product is the latest glossy print edition being offered by Luxury Lifestyle publications. It will serve the Wellington-Palm Beach area. The initial digital edition will cover travel, men's/woman's fashion, dining, the local home market, VIP profiles, luxury autos, health and beauty and the equestrian lifestyle.
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Academic Partnerships Completes Acquisition of Wiley University Services

Academic Partnerships (AP), a company that assists primarily regional public universities in expanding access and impact by supporting their online programs, today announced that it has successfully completed its acquisition of Wiley University Services, a line of business previously owned by Wiley (NYSE: WLY). The combined company will support over 125 colleges and universities in 40 U.S. states and internationally. "AP is in the business of transforming lives through education, and the acquisition of Wiley University Services better enables us to do just that," said Fernando Bleichmar, Chief Executive Officer of AP. "This is an exciting day as we combine our talent, capabilities, and resources to more effectively meet the growing demand for high-quality, affordable online degree programs and ensure our university partners and their students thrive."
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Delaware’s ‘Star News’ Will Be Delivered By USPS (mediapost.com)

Wilmington, Delaware’s Star News is about to join the parade of Gannett publications that are delivered by the U.S. Postal Service. The change takes place on Jan. 24. Print delivery faces labor challenges, fluctuating fuel prices, increased competition for door-to-door delivery workers and the switch to digital, the paper argues. Gannett says it has made this change in multiple markets.
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Judge Blocks Key Provisions of Iowa Book Banning Law (publishersweekly.com)

In yet another legal victory for freedom to read advocates, a federal judge has blocked two key portions of SF 496, a recently passed Iowa state law that sought to ban books with sexual content from Iowa schools and to bar classroom discussion of gender identity and sexuality for students below the seventh grade. In a 49-page opinion and order, judge Stephen Locher criticized the law as “incredibly broad” and acknowledged that it has already resulted in the removal of “of hundreds of books from school libraries, including, among others, nonfiction history books, classic works of fiction, Pulitzer Prize–winning contemporary novels, books that regularly appear on Advanced Placement exams, and even books designed to help students avoid being victimized by sexual assault.”
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Minimum wage increases go into effect in these 22 states (chainstoreage.com)

The new year brought with it minimum wage increases in more than 20 states — with more to come later in the year. Higher minimum wages took effect on Jan. 1 in 22 states (see list at end of article). The hikes come as the federal minimum wage remains unchanged since 2009, at $7.25 an hour. With the new wage hikes, employees in seven states — California, Connecticut, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Jersey, New York, Washington — along with Washington, D.C. and 41 cities and counties will be guaranteed baseline pay of $15.00 or more an hour. (Some cities and counties set their own minimum wages.) At the same time, 20 states — primary located in the South and parts of the Midwest — will continue to have a legal minimum wage of $7.25 in 2024.
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Scammers Pretend To Be From Publishers Clearing House (mediapost.com)

Authorities in the Buffalo, New York area are warning residents about scammers who pretend to be from the iconic Publishers Clearing House. The scam artists inform victims that they have won the famous sweepstakes, but have to pay processing fees upfront, WKBW reports. Payment is accepted online or in person. Publishers Clearing House informed WKBW that there are no such fees connected with its legendary prizes.
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FedEx Initiates $1.0 Billion Accelerated Share Repurchase Agreement

As part of its commitment to enhance capital returns to stockholders, FedEx Corp. (NYSE: FDX) today announced that it has entered into an accelerated share repurchase ("ASR") agreement with Mizuho Markets Americas LLC (“Mizuho”) to repurchase $1.0 billion of FedEx’s common stock as part of the company’s previously announced share repurchase program. Under the terms of the ASR agreement, FedEx will pay $1.0 billion to Mizuho and receive an initial share delivery of approximately 3.2 million shares on December 28, 2023, with the remainder of the shares, if any, to be delivered no later than February 29, 2024. The total number of shares purchased by FedEx pursuant to the ASR agreement will be based on an average of the volume-weighted average prices of FedEx’s common stock during the term of the ASR agreement, less a discount.
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Postal Service Delivery Performance Continues to Average 2.6 Days

FY24 first quarter service performance scores covering Oct. 1 through Dec. 15, included: *First-Class Mail: 86.1 percent of First-Class Mail delivered on time against the USPS service standard, a decrease of 4.9 percentage points from the fiscal fourth quarter. *Marketing Mail: 93.8 percent of Marketing Mail delivered on time against the USPS service standard, a decrease of 1.4 percentage points from the fiscal fourth quarter. *Periodicals: 81.7 percent of Periodicals delivered on time against the USPS service standard, a decrease of 4.3 percentage points from the fiscal fourth quarter.
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E-readers were supposed to kill printed books. Instead, they’re booming (cbc.ca)

When e-readers like the Amazon Kindle burst onto the scene, showing up next to menorahs and under Christmas trees in the early 2000s, they were predicted to bring about the death of the print book — and maybe the independent bookstore too. But publishing sales data and on the ground observations from booksellers indicate that neither prediction has come true — in fact, sales of print books appear to be enjoying a bit of a lift driven by strong performance in genre fiction and interest from younger readers. Print book sales are up 10‒14 per cent over three years in most major English-speaking markets, says Duncan Stewart, a consumer forecasting analyst for Deloitte who lives in Toronto and specializes in media and technology. He says those are quite nice numbers "for an industry that many people thought was dying."
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Savvas Introduces SIOP® Professional Learning to K-12 Educators in the Middle East

Savvas Learning Company announced that educators in the Middle East will for the first time be able to benefit from SIOP® Professional Learning, a research-based instructional framework for teaching both English language skills and academic content. SIOP® Professional Learning is based on the SIOP® Model that is highly valued by teachers for integrating language learning into everyday instruction while also making grade-level content accessible to all students. Through its SIOP® training partner in the Middle East, SAMA Knowledge Training Institute, Savvas is now offering Middle East educators who work with English learners (ELs) the Savvas SIOP® Training for Teachers Workshop. This in-depth, in-person training provides the professional development necessary to effectively implement the SIOP® Model in schools and classrooms. The introduction of SIOP® to the Middle East comes at a time when several countries in that region have set specific goals to ensure that their students develop English language proficiency in order to successfully compete in the global economy.
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Postal Service Delivery Performance Continues to Average 2.6 Days

FY24 first quarter service performance scores covering October 1 through December 8, included: *First-Class Mail: 86.7 percent of First-Class Mail delivered on time against the USPS service standard, a decrease of 4.3 percentage points from the fiscal fourth quarter. *Marketing Mail: 93.9 percent of Marketing Mail delivered on time against the USPS service standard, a decrease of 1.3 percentage points from the fiscal fourth quarter. *Periodicals: 82.4 percent of Periodicals delivered on time against the USPS service standard, a decrease of 3.6 percentage points from the fiscal fourth quarter.
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NRF launches sustainability center

The National Retail Federation (NRF) has announced a new hub to support the expansion of sustainability efforts within retail. The NRF Center for Retail Sustainability aims to “generate economic value while creating net positive environmental, social and community benefits.” NRF said the center’s initial areas of focus include utilizing consumer insights around sustainability products and practices, facilitating the emergence of the circular economy (sponsored by Deloitte), and improving supply chain traceability within the retail industry.
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Costco Wholesale Corporation Reports First Quarter Fiscal Year 2024 Operating Results

Costco Wholesale Corporation announced its operating results for the first quarter (twelve weeks) of fiscal 2024, ended November 26, 2023. For the first quarter the Company reported net sales of $56.72 billion, an increase of 6.1 percent from $53.44 billion for the first quarter of fiscal year 2023, ended November 20, 2022. Net sales were benefited by approximately one-half to one percent in the U.S. and worldwide from the shift of the fiscal calendar, as a result of the fifty-third week in fiscal year 2023.
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California Court Throws Out Underground Tax Regulations in Big Win For ACMA

The ACMA has won a hard-earned victory in its litigation against the California Franchise Tax Board (FTB). Siding with the ACMA, the California Superior Court ruled that the FTB went too far in dressing up substantive regulations as mere “guidance.” On December 13th, San Francisco Superior Court Judge Ethan Schulman issued a carefully reasoned order granting the ACMA’s motion for summary adjudication, concluding that two guidance documents published by the FTB in 2022, Technical Advice Memorandum 2022–01 and FTB Publication 1050, are void as invalid “underground regulations.”
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Texas State Board of Education Approves Savvas Learning Company’s Full Line of Texas Experience Science K-12 Learning Solutions

Savvas Learning Company, a next-generation K-12 learning solutions leader, is pleased to announce that its full line of evidence-based, standards-aligned Texas Experience Science K-12 learning solutions has been approved by the Texas State Board of Education. “Designed to inspire scientific discovery and real-world, experiential learning, our Texas Experience Science K-12 solutions use hands-on activities, combined with the exploration of phenomena, to engage and excite students,” said Bethlam Forsa, CEO of Savvas Learning Company. “Texas district and school leaders can have confidence that our science instructional materials are of the highest quality, giving educators the resources to encourage students to not only learn about science but to do science.”
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Adobe Reports Record Q4 and Fiscal 2023 Revenue

Fourth Quarter Fiscal Year 2023 Financial Highlights: *Adobe achieved revenue of $5.05 billion in its fourth quarter of fiscal year 2023, which represents 12 percent year-over-year growth or 13 percent in constant currency. Diluted earnings per share was $3.23 on a GAAP basis and $4.27 on a non-GAAP basis. *GAAP operating income in the fourth quarter was $1.74 billion and non-GAAP operating income was $2.34 billion. GAAP net income was $1.48 billion and non-GAAP net income was $1.96 billion. *Cash flows from operations were $1.60 billion. *Remaining Performance Obligations (“RPO”) exiting the quarter were $17.22 billion. *Adobe repurchased approximately 1.8 million shares during the quarter.
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Savvas Learning Company Receives 2023 Chicago Top Workplaces Award

Savvas Learning Company, a next-generation K-12 learning solutions leader, is excited to announce that for the third year in a row it has been recognized as a top workplace in Chicago. Savvas was named to the 2023 Chicago Top Workplaces list that is published by The Chicago Tribune and produced in partnership with Energage, an employee engagement technology company. Chicago’s Top Workplaces list showcases strong workplace environments and highlights companies for their commitment to their employees, customers, and corporate mission.
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Intergraf Highlights Print’s Crucial Role In Education

In response to the recently published results of the 2022 Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA) by the OECD, Intergraf released a statement calling for a balanced approach to education, emphasizing the importance of retaining print materials in the learning process. The PISA 2022 results show a significant decline in student performance in reading, falling by 10 points in OECD countries. This is a substantial drop, equivalent to half a year’s worth of learning in reading. This decline is unprecedented in the history of PISA, as the OECD average score has never changed by more than five points in reading between consecutive assessments. While the COVID-19 pandemic appears to be a factor contributing to this decline, trend analysis reveals pre-pandemic declines in reading performance, thus indicating a long-term problem.
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Grainger Announces Agreement to Sell E&R Industrial Sales, Inc.

Grainger announced the sale of E&R Industrial Sales, Inc. to Paradigm Equity Partners, a Los Angeles-based private equity firm. E&R Industrial became a subsidiary of W.W. Grainger, Inc. in 2013. "We are excited about this next stage of growth with Paradigm Equity Partners," said Jason D'Souza, President, E&R Industrial Sales, Inc. "E&R Industrial is firmly committed to a smooth transition for our customers, suppliers and team members." Grainger will continue to serve customers with maintenance metalworking products, services and expertise while focusing on its core business of maintenance, repair and operating (MRO) products and services. Customers will continue to have access to E&R's assortment when purchasing through Grainger, while E&R customers will have access to Grainger's MRO-leading assortment when purchasing through E&R. Details of the agreement were not publicly disclosed.
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AAP September 2023 StatShot Report: Overall Publishing Industry Flat for Month of September, and Up 0.8% Year-To-Date

The Association of American Publishers (AAP) today released its StatShot report for September 2023 reflecting reported revenue for Trade (Consumer Books), Higher Education Course Materials, and Professional Publishing. Total revenues across all categories for September 2023 were flat as compared to September 2022, coming in at $1.4 billion. Year-to-date revenues were up 0.8%, at $9.4 billion for the first nine months of the year. Trade (Consumer Books) revenues were down 0.4% in September, coming in at $905.9 million. In terms of physical paper format revenues during the month of September, in the Trade (Consumer Books) category, Hardback revenues were up 7.2%, coming in at $379.2 million; Paperbacks were down 4.9%, with $299.1 million in revenue; Mass Market was down 39.5% to $11.3 million; and Special Bindings were up 11.8%, with $27.1 million in revenue.
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Penguin Random House Acquires Hay House (publishersweekly.com)

Penguin Random House has acquired Hay House, the self-help and health and wellness publisher founded by bestselling You Can Heal Your Life author Louise Hay in 1984. Terms of the transaction, which was brokered by Oaklins DeSilva+Philips, were not disclosed. Reid Tracy, CEO of Hay House, will continue to run the publisher, which will "retain its editorial and publishing independence," after the deal closes, the companies said in a statement. In addition, "no changes are planned" for Hay House's employees, management, or offices in Carlsbad, Calif., New York, and London.
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Service Performance Across USPS Network Remains Stable

FY24 first quarter service performance scores covering October 1 through December 1, included: *First-Class Mail: 87.1 percent of First-Class Mail delivered on time against the USPS service standard, a decrease of 3.9 percentage points from the fiscal fourth quarter. *Marketing Mail: 94.0 percent of Marketing Mail delivered on time against the USPS service standard, a decrease of 1.2 percentage points from the fiscal fourth quarter. *Periodicals: 83.3 percent of Periodicals delivered on time against the USPS service standard, a decrease of 2.8 percentage points from the fiscal fourth quarter.
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‘The Nation’ Reduces Print Frequency In Favor Of Bigger Issues (mediapost.com)

The Nation, which now appears every other week, is switch to monthly frequency in January. The leftist magazine is promising 84 “bigger, richer” pages instead of the 48 it is serving now, according to the New York Times. This is being done in response to reader preferences, says D.D. Guttenplan, editor, • “Unlike almost all of our competitors, The Nation has never made a lot of money from advertising,” Mr. Guttenplan points out, according to the Times. The Nation is resolutely not going to an all-digital model.
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UPS to boost global trade with enhanced operations at new hub at Hong Kong International Airport

Global logistics service provider UPS (NYSE: UPS) and the Hong Kong Airport Authority have entered into an agreement that improves UPS service to customers and enhances the company’s operations in Asia with a new hub at the Hong Kong International Airport and near the Hong Kong-Zhuhai-Macau Bridge. The new hub will serve as UPS Hong Kong’s main facility for processing and sorting imports, exports, and transshipments, to and from Europe, the U.S., and other parts of Asia. The hub is expected to be completed by 2028 and will be built on a land parcel of 20,000 square metres with direct access to aircraft. The facility is being designed to handle close to 1 million tons of annual capacity, giving UPS and its customers around the world better and more reliable connectivity to Hong Kong, the Greater Bay Area1, and the growing Asia Pacific consumer market.
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U.S. Postal Service Announces Holiday Operating Schedule

The United States Postal Service today announced that all branches will be closed in observance of Christmas and New Year’s Day. This closure affects all postal services, including retail services, mail delivery and blue collection boxes. This year, Christmas Eve and New Year’s Eve each fall on Sunday, when normal closures apply. There are currently no plans for limited hours on Saturday, Dec. 23 or Saturday, Dec. 30. Customers are always encouraged to check with their local Post Office for hours of operation.
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Wiley Reports Second Quarter 2024 Results

GAAP Results: Revenue of $493 million (-4%), Operating income of $46 million (-19%), and EPS loss of -$0.35 (-$1.03). GAAP earnings impacted by impairment charges of $52 million related to our held for sale or sold assets and restructuring charges totalling $25 million related to our value creation plan. “Our second quarter and year-to-date overall performance was in line with our expectations as we execute on our value creation plan to make Wiley a stronger, leaner, and more profitable company focused on driving consistent growth in our core,” said Matthew Kissner, Interim President and CEO. “We expect year-over-year revenue improvement in the second half and expect to exit the year with a stronger margin profile. Fiscal 2025 and 2026 is where we will realize the full benefits of our current actions.”
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Publishers Submit Reply Comments to Copyright Office in Artificial Intelligence Proceeding

The Association of American Publishers today filed reply comments in the U.S. Copyright Office inquiry into the intersection of copyright law and artificial intelligence (AI) in response to flawed and inaccurate assertions submitted by some tech companies and/or their investors in the first comment round including tired assertions that the rights of authors and publishers are an obstacle to innovation. AAP filed a lengthy submission that includes a multitude of points, including: *Big tech petitions the government “for cover from liability for their calculated disregard of authorship, also ignoring that rights holders today already routinely license their works for all kinds of digital uses.” *“Rather than working with copyright owners, these companies seek to appropriate literature and other invaluable intellectual property for their own commercial gain, and to bend the law to their will."
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Who Should Use Every Door Direct Mail (EDDM) in 2024? (piworld.com)

EDDM (every door direct mail) has gained popularity. EDDM as defined by the USPS is designed to help you reach every home, every address, every time. You can map out a target area, use demographic data (e.g. age, household income, and size) to select a delivery route, choose a mailing drop-off date, and pay online — all from your computer. You can create your mailings up to 30 days before you plan to mail them. Simply enter an address, ZIP code, or city and state for your target area to get started. Sounds great right? So how do you know if EDDM is right for you?
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Average Time to Deliver Across Postal Network Steady at 2.6 Days

FY24 first quarter service performance scores covering October 1 through November 24, included: *First-Class Mail: 87.5 percent of First-Class Mail delivered on time against the USPS service standard, a decrease of 3.6 percentage points from the fiscal fourth quarter. *Marketing Mail: 94.2 percent of Marketing Mail delivered on time against the USPS service standard, a decrease of 1.1 percentage points from the fiscal fourth quarter. *Periodicals: 84.2 percent of Periodicals delivered on time against the USPS service standard, a decrease of 1.8 percentage points from the fiscal fourth quarter.
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Hearst Newspapers Acquires Puzzle Games Platform Puzzmo

Hearst Newspapers announced the acquisition of Puzzmo, a new collaborative puzzle games platform. The announcement was made by Hearst Newspapers President Jeffrey Johnson. Developed over the last three years by founders Zach Gage and Orta Therox, Puzzmo.com is the new place for thoughtful puzzles. The site will be the home of web-based versions of Gage’s award-winning puzzle games catalog, including Apple Arcade mainstays like SpellTower and new and exclusive releases beginning with FlipArt and Wordbind. Puzzmo will connect each game and every player with a unified system of points, achievements, social connections and multi-player modes never before seen in the puzzle games category, creating a sense of community. Gage and Therox will lead game development and technology for the platform at Hearst.
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Active Interest Media Acquires The Taunton Press (mediapost.com)

Enthusiast media company Active Interest Media (AIM) has acquired Taunton Press, a consumer media and book business. Terms were not disclosed. The purchase of Newtown, CT-based Taunton doubles AIM’s reach in the gardening, woodworking and homebuilding sectors, the company states. “While the symmetry of many of our core markets is obvious; woodworking, gardening, and homebuilding; there are many other similarities,” notes Andrew Clurman, president and CEO of AIM. For one, both firms have been “aggressively pursuing the creation of new digital products, memberships, and online learning to better serve their audiences," Clurman adds. For another, the two companies share “a dedication to producing high-quality information, and inspiring enthusiasts for hands-on living,” says Andrea Roman, board chair of Taunton Press.
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