Friday, February 20, 2009

RBI Profits Collapse

The scale of the horror of traditional business media is in sharp relief today. Reed Elsevier has produced great results largely because its subs based business is so robust - but the profits from RBI across the globe have fallen to £55m. The report in the FT says this is down from £90m but at the time of the proposed sale the talk was of profits of £150m.

If we valued RBI (Reed Business Information) on the same profit multiple as Centaur who gave a profit warning today, then its market value would be less than £200m! No wonder the sale deal couldn't get done.

Also announced is a £112m restructuring programme for RBI. The current strike ballot over 35 redundancies in the UK is now in sharp relief. There is worse to come.

Let's hope the restructuring programme has some innovation in it as well as cost cutting. Reed says it has no plans to close any titles.

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