Citing a lack of hits to compete with a number of movie tie-in bestsellers in 2013, revenue at Houghton Mifflin Harcourt’s trade division fell to $163 million in 2014, from $171 million in the prior year.
The division had a $2.9 million net loss in 2014 compared to net income of $6.5 million in 2013; adjusted EBITDA fell to $12.7 million from $24.4 million in 2013. The revenue decline in the year came despite a good fourth quarter in which revenue rose to $48 million from $46 million in the final quarter of 2013.
In HMH’s much larger education group, sales for the year inched up $1 million, to $1.21 billion, driven by a $13 million increase in sales from its Heinemann unit, and a $13 million gain in revenue in test sales. The education unit also had $230 million in deferred revenue. The division had a $3.2 million net loss in the year compared to earnings of $5.9 million in 2013; adjusted EBITDA was $298 million last year, down from $343 million in 2014.
Total revenue for HMH of $1.3 billion was down 0.5% from 2013 and its net loss held even at about $111 million. The company expects total sales to rise between 2% and 5% in 2015 due in part to recognition of deferred revenue.