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John Wiley & Sons Management Discusses Q1 2013 Results - Earnings Call Transcript

First quarter free cash flow was also affected by lower cash earnings as a result of decline in revenues, acceleration of calendar year 2012 cash collections into fiscal year 2012 and higher capital spending on technology. And debt was $365 million at the end of the quarter compared to $353 million a year earlier. During the quarter, Wiley re-published -- repurchased 218,000 shares at a cost of $10.6 million. In June, Wiley increased its quarterly dividend by 20% to $0.24. It was the 19th consecutive annual increase.

Now, I'd like to provide some information regarding performance of Wiley's global businesses. You will note that the company now includes a report on segment performance after the allocation of certain direct shared service and administrative costs for the purposes of assessing performance and making resource allocation decisions. STMS revenue of $236 million for the quarter declined by $9 million or 4%. General subscription revenue declined by 2% from prior year, mainly due to publication timing. Rights, backfile and corporate sales revenue also declined in the quarter against a very strong performance in the first quarter of fiscal year 2012. Calendar year 2012 subscription growth rates moderated during the quarter as we saw fewer major license deals compared with the year earlier. At the end of July, institutional subscriptions for calendar year 2012 are up approximately 2% compared with calendar year 2011 at the same time. Particular renewals in Europe, Middle East and Africa driven by cuts in public funding and non-renewable subscriptions in some Middle East markets have slowed our revenue growth. Our business in the U.S. and Asia is performing well.

The STMS book business increased 1% to $37 million. Digital revenues grew 54% as a result of strong sales of e-books and digital licensing. This growth was offset somewhat by a decline in print revenue. Digital sales now comprise 23% of total STMS book sales compared with 15% a year ago. Adjusted direct contribution to profit for the quarter of $94 million was down 9% from prior year. Adjusted direct contribution to profit excludes a $3 million restructuring charge related to the discontinuation, outsourcing and/or relocation of certain STMS activities that will result in a reduction in ongoing operating costs. Restructuring charges are expected to be fully recovered within 18 months.

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