Total revenue at Penguin Random House inched up 1.1% in the first half of 2017, over the first six months of 2016, while earnings at the publisher rose 11.4%. Parent company Bertlesmann reported that worldwide sales were €1.53 billion ($1.81 billion) in the period, up from €1.52 billion. Meanwhile, EBITDA (earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation, and amortization) was €206 million, up from €185 million in the first six months of 2016. Bertlesmann said the earnings improvement reflected continued benefits from the Penguin-Random House merger.
Bookstore sales continued their strong rebound from the lows of spring 2020. According to preliminary estimates released by the U.S. Census Bureau, bookstore sales soared 130% in May over May 2020, rising to $632 million.
Last April and May saw the weakest bookstore sales performances of 2020, with sales in May 2020 totaling just $275 million. Compared to May 2019, May sales this year were down 9.2%.