Transition to digital weighs on John Wiley 4Q

John Wiley & Sons 4Q profit shrinks as publisher racks up charges in effort to digital

Associated Press

HOBOKEN, N.J. (AP) -- John Wiley & Sons said Tuesday that its fiscal fourth-quarter net income tumbled as the publisher booked charges in its effort to focus more on its digital business.

For the quarter ended April 30, John Wiley earned $8 million, or 13 cents per share, down from $48.3 million, or 80 cents per share, in the same quarter of 2012. Excluding restructuring and other one-time charges, per-share profit fell to 71 cents from 77 cents.

Revenue fell 2 percent to $445.9 million from $454.6 million. John Wiley & Sons completed the sale of a consumer publishing division in April. Excluding those, revenue rose 1 percent.

John Wiley & Sons' Class A shares fell $3.70, or 8.9 percent, to $37.75 in morning trading.

John Wiley & Sons is in the midst of a focus shift away from print — its assets had included the Frommer's travel brand, CliffsNotes and Webster's New World Dictionary — and toward digital products. In addition to shedding its consumer print publications, the company recently acquired online learning company Deltak, which helped fourth-quarter revenue at its education business jump 25 percent. The company also owns the For Dummies brand.

The Hoboken, N.J., company said fiscal 2014, which runs through April, will be another transition year.

It expects an adjusted profit of $2.85 to $2.95 per share for the year.

In fiscal 2013, profit came to $144.2 million, or $2.39 per share, on revenue of $1.76 billion. Adjusted profit was $2.92 per share.

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