The McGraw-Hill Companies' CEO Discusses Q1 2012 Results - Earnings Call Transcript

The McGraw-Hill Companies (MHP)

Q1 2012 Earnings Call

April 24, 2012 8:30 am ET

Executives

Robert S. Merritt - Vice President of Investor Relations

Harold Whittlesey McGraw - Chairman, Chief Executive Officer, President and Chairman of Executive Committee

John F. Callahan - Chief Financial Officer and Executive Vice President

Analysts

William G. Bird - Lazard Capital Markets LLC, Research Division

Craig Huber

Craig A. Huber - Access 3:42, LLC

Peter P. Appert - Piper Jaffray Companies, Research Division

Michael A. Meltz - JP Morgan Chase & Co, Research Division

Douglas M. Arthur - Evercore Partners Inc., Research Division

David Reynolds - Jefferies & Company, Inc., Research Division

Edward J. Atorino - The Benchmark Company, LLC, Research Division

Presentation

Operator

Good morning, and welcome to The McGraw-Hill Companies' Conference Call. [Operator Instructions]. To access the webcast and slides, go to www.mcgraw-hill.com and click on the link for the first quarter earnings webcast. [Operator Instructions] I would now like to introduce Mr. Chip Merritt, Vice President of Investor Relations for The McGraw-Hill Companies. Sir, you may begin.

Robert S. Merritt

Good morning, and thank you for joining us this morning at The McGraw-Hill Companies First Quarter 2012 Earnings Call. I'm Chip Merritt, Vice President of Investor Relations at The McGraw-Hill Companies.

This morning, we issued a news release with our results. We hope you've all had a chance to review the release. If you need a copy of the release and financial schedules, they can be downloaded at www.mcgraw-hill.com. Once again, that's www.mcgraw-hill.com.

In today's earnings release and during the conference call, we are providing adjusted financial information. This information is provided to enable investors to make meaningful comparisons of the corporation's operating performance between periods and to view the corporation's business from the same perspective as management's. The earnings release contains exhibits that reconcile the difference between the non-GAAP measures and the comparable financial measures calculated in accordance with U.S. GAAP.

The results for the prior year quarter also reflect the reclassification of the Broadcasting Group as a discontinued operation.

Before we begin, I need to provide certain cautionary remarks about forward-looking statements. Except for historical information, the matters discussed in the teleconference may contain forward-looking statements within the meaning of the Private Securities and Litigation Reform Act of 1995, including projections, estimates and descriptions of future events. Any such statements are based on current expectations and current economic conditions and are subject to risks and uncertainties that may cause actual results to differ materially from results anticipated in these forward-looking statements. In this regard, we direct listeners to the cautionary statements contained in our Form 10-Ks, 10-Qs and other periodic reports filed with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission.

We're aware that we do have some media representatives with us on the call. However, this call is intended for investors and we would ask that questions from the media be directed to Patti Rockenwagner in our New York office at (212) 512-3533 subsequent to this call.

Now I would like to turn the call over to Harold McGraw III, Chairman, President and CEO of The McGraw-Hill Companies. Terry?

Harold Whittlesey McGraw

Okay, thank you, Chip, and good morning, everyone, and welcome to today's conference call. You just heard, once again, from Chip Merritt. He's our new Vice President of Investor Relations. Chip joined us about a month ago, and we certainly are glad to have him aboard.

For the last 73 quarters, Don Rubin introduced our earnings conference calls. On February 20, 2012, our Senior Vice President for Investor Relations, Don Rubin, passed away after only recently announcing his retirement from McGraw-Hill. His distinguished career was 52 years long. He was a manager, a thought leader, a mentor and a beloved friend to all, and his legacy has been one of growth, purpose, passion, trust and relevance. I had the distinct honor of working closely with Don for many, many of those years. With Don's passing, McGraw-Hill has lost a leader, and personally, we have lost a very close and dear friend. And I know this is true for many of you on the earnings call today.

Don began his career as a sports writer and was a journalist at heart. And to honor Don's rich legacy at McGraw-Hill, the corporation has established a scholarship at the CUNY Graduate School of Journalism, and I can think of no better way to say goodbye to our dear friend than to say hello to future Rubin scholars in the lifetime ahead.

All right, joining me on today's conference call is Jack Callahan, our Chief Financial Officer. This morning, Jack and I will review first quarter results, provide an update on our Growth and Value Plan progress and give the outlook for the balance of the year.

There are a couple of themes that permeate today's discussion and are at the core of our focus here at the company. Obviously, number one is delivering top and bottom line growth; and the other is executing upon our Growth and Value Plan.

These are at the forefront of our strategy to transform McGraw-Hill into 2 powerful new companies, and we're pleased with the progress made thus far in 2012. We see incredible opportunity ahead as we create McGraw-Hill Financial and McGraw-Hill Education. Both companies share a common promise and a common purpose. We're about helping our customers find new ways to succeed and to prosper in a rapidly changing world where information is often conflicting, confounding and sometimes confusing. The bottom line is that we help make sense of it all.

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