Friday, November 28, 1997

11/28/97: Thomson, Barns&Noble

Thomson Purchases Idd Print Publishing Assets
Comments From Online Bookselling Forum
Matthew Benber Is For Sale
Harold Evans Will Join Mort Zuckerman At Daily News
Barnes And Noble & Amazon.Com


NEW YORK--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Nov. 19, 1997 Thomson Financial Services announced today that it has acquired the print publishing assets of IDD Enterprises, L.P. (IDD), which will be folded into its Securities Data Publishing (SDP) unit. Terms of the agreement were not disclosed. The purchase includes the flagship publication Investment Dealers' Digest, the premier magazine which has covered Wall Street, financial techniques, and organizational strategies for professional financiers for more than 60 years; Mergers & Acquisitions Journal; nine newsletters: Private Equity Week; Private Placement Letter; Mergers & Acquisitions Report; Bank Loan Report; Going Public: The IPO Reporter; Eliot Sharp's Financing News; Web Finance; Asset-Backed Securities Week; and Mortgage-Backed Securities Letter; and two directories: Mutual Fund Directory and Corporate Syndicate Personnel. "The acquisition of this venerable product family complements our existing publishing portfolio and fills out our coverage of the capital markets. This acquisition also provides SDP with significant leverage for expansion in the institutional asset management and equity and debt underwriting markets," stated SDP President and CEO, Bruce Morris.

Part of The Thomson Corporation (TTC), a $7.7-billion company based in Toronto, Thomson Financial Services employs more than 5,500 people in nearly 40 offices around the world. The principal activity of TTC is specialized information and publishing worldwide. In addition, TTC has important interests in newspaper publishing in North America and in leisure travel in the United Kingdom. The Corporation had sales of US$7.7 billion in 1996 and has some 50,000 staff members.

Internet bookstores are helping to deliver purchase information to the marketplace, and could soon be wreaking havoc on the concept of foreign rights. But whether they are expanding the customer base for books or simply stealing sales away from other channels is still up in the air, according to panelists at a public forum held last week in New York. Random House president Phil Pfeffer said he sees the emergence of Internet bookselling as "expanding opportunities, not cannibalizing opportunities." Mary Engstrom, VP of publishers affairs for, argued that the Internet is expanding the U.S. book market by providing access to three attractive audiences: customers outside the U.S., consumers living in remote areas of the country where there is no local bookstore, and the new generation of computer-literate and book-shy adults.

Pfeffer said Internet bookstores, as well as the sites operated by publishers themselves, "have a significant influence" on book sales by providing information consumers need to make purchase decisions. At this early point, those sales "more often than not" are still being realized at traditional bricks and mortar bookstores, he said. Engstrom said; at the end of 1996, overseas sales made up 33% of total sales. Online selling and its need for speedy delivery has also expedited the migration toward drop-shipping, a concept that many bookstore owners had heretofore been disinclined to adopt (preferring instead to bring their customers back to the store to pick up orders). Panelists also agreed that Internet bookselling will cause a "major upheaval" in the rights market. "What we have come to know is going to change significantly," Pfeffer said.

The problem has already arisen in the U.K., where "U.S. books are now available next to the U.K. versions, and at lower prices," Freeman noted. And U.K. publishers who "paid a certain fee thinking they own that market" have every reason to be disturbed by the prospect, Freeman said. According to Engstrom, sold at least one copy of more than 80% of all in-print lists at several major publishing houses in the third quarter of 1997. One audience member called the figure "astounding."'s commission-based "Associates Program" has 15,000 members that include a variety of small publishers but is comprised mostly of companies outside the book industry, she said.
(Mediacentral-Cowles Business Media)

Times Mirror is evaluating business options for legal publisher Matthew Bender & Co and the medical professional publisher, Mosby Inc. Alternatives under consideration include a sale, a spinoff to shareholders and/or swaps for other strategic assets.


Harold Evans, the colorful president and publisher of Random House's trade group, will leave the publishing house to head up Mortimer Zuckerman's publications, which include The Daily News of New York, U.S. News & World Report and The Atlantic Monthly. Zuckerman, in naming Evans editorial director and vice chairman on Tuesday, said that Evans would essentially take over a large portion of his duties at the various publications. Evans will have a say in everything from hiring to story ideas to design at the magazines and at The Daily News. The appointment of Evans, a 69-year-old London native, signals that Zuckerman is stepping up efforts to take on The News's tabloid rival, The New York Post, particularly after recent declines in the circulation of The News' thick Sunday paper.

The arrival of Evans into the battle between the papers has the added intrigue of putting him head to head with an old enemy, Rupert Murdoch, who owns The Post. Evans resigned as editor of The Times of London in 1982 after resisting efforts by Murdoch, the newspaper's owner, to force his removal. "I think it tells you that Mort wants an impact player," said Mitchell Moss, the director of the New York University Urban Research Center. "He wants to put The News on the map." Evans leaves Random House, where he ran some of the publisher's most prestigious imprints, with a somewhat uneven seven-year record. While credited with significantly raising the profile of the publishing house, some publishing executives say he lacked the management and business skills required to run an imprint. Several executives said Evans lacked an increasingly essential understanding of the bottom line. Worrying about the business side, industry insiders say, simply was not Evan's strength, though he brought a passion and glamour to the position, enhanced in part by his wife, Tina Brown, the editor in chief of The New Yorker.

"It was not fully understanding the chemistry of the business, rather than not caring," said another executive who also spoke on condition of anonymity. At Random House, Evans was replaced by Ann Godoff, editor in chief of Random House Adult Trade Books and executive vice president of the Random House Trade Publishing Group which includes Random House Adult Trade Books, Villard Books and the Modern Library. Ms. Godoff, who was promoted last summer from editorial director to editor in chief -- a position Evans had previously held -- will carry out Evan's same responsibilities under a different title, president and editor in chief. Net traffic for small bookstores


Barnes and Noble reported that purchases from the top 10 US publishers had declined to 46 percent from 74 percent three years ago. This represents a significant shift to independents, small publishers and university presses and is reflective of a broadening of consumer interest to what used to be 'fringe' subjects. and are competing for an estimated $156MM in on line booksales for the fourth quarter.

Friday, November 21, 1997

11/21/97: Primedia, McClatchy, John Wiley, Dow Jones

Mcclatchy Purchases Cowles Media Company
Primedia (Kiii) Acquires Publisher
Wiley And Dow Jones Form Publishing Alliance
Dow Jones To Ax 400 Workers
Don’t You Wish Your Last Name Were Murdoch?
Macromedia Purchases New Jersey Newspapers
Dow Jones Board Votes To Sell Markets Unit
Springer Chairman Plans To Step Down
Dow Jones To Acquire Rest Of IDD Enterprises L.P


MCCLATCHY PURCHASES COWLES MEDIA COMPANY (Inadvertently left out last week)

McClatchy Newspapers, Inc. (NYSE: MNI) and Cowles Media Company (CMC), announced today an agreement for McClatchy to acquire Cowles, publisher of the Star Tribune in the Twin Cities of Minneapolis/St. Paul, in a transaction valued at $1.4 billion, including the assumption of approximately $90 million in existing Cowles debt. The merger creates the eighth-largest newspaper company in the nation based on daily and Sunday circulation.

The Star Tribune is the leading newspaper in Minnesota with circulation of 387,000 daily and 673,000 on Sunday. It ranks as the 16th largest daily and the 12th largest Sunday newspaper in the country. The Star Tribune's daily circulation is nearly twice that of its primary competitor in the Twin Cities market, the 15th largest in the country. On Sunday, its circulation is two and one half times larger than its competitor and its penetration is the highest among two-paper markets in the United States.

In addition to the Star Tribune, Cowles operates three other business units which McClatchy expects to sell as soon as possible, using the proceeds to reduce debt. The other business units are: Cowles Business Media, Inc., a publisher of specialized business magazines and information services; Cowles Enthusiast Media, Inc., a publisher of 27 special-interest consumer magazines and related books and products; and Cowles Creative Publishing, Inc., a specialty publisher, distributor and direct marketer of books, videos and interactive media for the home arts, home improvement and outdoor markets.

McClatchy Newspapers, Inc., headquartered in Sacramento, California, currently publishes 10 daily and 13 non-daily newspapers located in western coastal states and North and South Carolina. The company reported 1996 revenues of $624 million and had daily circulation of 972,600 and Sunday circulation of 1,175,100. McClatchy's newspapers include, among others, The Sacramento Bee, The News and Observer (Raleigh, NC), The Fresno (CA) Bee, The News Tribune (Tacoma, WA) and the Anchorage Daily News. McClatchy also owns and operates other media-related businesses, including, a national online publishing operation and The Newspaper Network, a national newspaper marketing company.


Primedia Inc., formerly K-III Communications said that its technical and trade division, Interec Publishing, has acquired Cardinal Business Media, whose magazines include Mix, which covers the professional recording industry; Electronic Musician, which covers computer-generated music production; and Recording Industry Sourcebook, a music industry directory. Also included in the deal are Cardinal's Club Industry News and its related trade shows for owners and operators of commercial health and fitness facilities. Excluding the latest acquisitions, Overland Park, KS-based Interec publishes 17 entertainment and business communications titles including Pool and Spa News, Broadcast Engineering, Millimeter, Video Systems and Telephony. Interec also puts on trade shows. In total, Interec, one of the largest trade publishers in the U.S., publishes 72 magazines, supplements, newsletters and show dailies throughout the world.

Bonnie Lieberman, Senior Vice President and General Manager of the College Division of John Wiley & Sons, Inc. today announced an agreement with Dow Jones Interactive Publishing, a division of Dow Jones & Company, to develop the Wiley Business Extra program, featuring content from Dow Jones and The Wall Street Journal Interactive Edition, as part of Wiley's print and online college-level business textbook offerings. The Wiley Business Extra program is being created to enhance the student learning experience and offer professors a new level of support resources to strengthen the business curriculum. "We're very excited to be working with Dow Jones to further our long-standing strategic objective to help students to learn and teachers to teach. The Wiley Business Extra program does this by offering students greater insight into their studies through access to Dow Jones publications and articles, including The Wall Street Journal Interactive Edition, and by providing pedagogical tools to help them understand how to use this wealth of information," said Ms. Lieberman.

Wiley Business Extra will deliver the full-text of a selected number of Dow Jones stories, focusing on the topic, industry, or special area of interest relevant to the Wiley textbooks. Dow Jones will scan The Wall Street Journal Interactive Edition and other Dow Jones newswires for stories that match a profile established for the Wiley texts. Stories matching the profile will then be posted on the Business Extra electronic news folder hosted at Wiley's Web site,, along with discussion questions for classroom assignments. Divided into sub-sections, the folder will contain a separate area for each text associated with the program. Wiley will publish a paperback book called The On-Line Business Survival Guide that shows students how to use The Wall Street Journal Interactive Edition, research business problems on the Web, and use the news folder. The customized guide will be available for purchase as a stand-alone or as a supplement to nine Wiley finance accounting, management, and information management textbooks.
(John Wiley)

Serious Losses at Financial Info Unit As many as 400 workers will be cut from the 4,000-strong staff of Dow Jones Markets, the financial information division of Dow Jones & Co., previously known as Telerate. Reports issued today indicated that Dow Jones & Co., publisher of the Wall Street Journal, would also be announcing its first annual loss since it went public in 1963. That loss is predicted to be as high as $600 million. Dow Jones Market delivers breaking business news and financial information to investors and financial analysts through a proprietary desk terminal network. Reuters and Bloomberg provide competing services. Wall Street analysts had previously speculated that Dow Jones would sell the troubled financial information unit. Today the publishing company said it was reviewing the struggling unit's operations and studying alternative strategies. (See Below)

News America Publishing Group has announced the formation of News America Digital Publishing. The new division will consolidate the Group’s electronic publishing operations, including the TV Guide Entertainment Network (TVGEN); Fox News On-line; Fox Sports On-line; News Internet Services, an internet solutions provider; Kesmai, a multi-player games company; and the Advanced Media Group which focuses on business development and strategic planning. The announcement was made today by Anthea Disney, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of News America Publishing Group, a division of News Corporation. James Murdoch, formerly News Corporation Vice-President for New Media, has been named President of News America Digital Publishing, reporting to Disney.
(News Corp)

Macromedia Inc., parent company of The Record, is purchasing the daily North Jersey Herald & News and 11 weekly newspapers that serve parts of five New Jersey counties. Jonathan Markey, president of the Hackensack-based Record, said Thursday that the Herald & News and the group of weeklies would continue to operate independently, although some administrative functions of the two daily papers may be combined in the future. "We plan to continue to operate the newspaper as the Herald & News, hopefully forever and certainly for as long as it works as expected and continues to provide value," Markey said.

In August, the media giant Gannett Co. announced that it would purchase the Asbury Park Press and the Home News & Tribune. All the papers being purchased by Macromedia are part of North Jersey Newspapers Co., a subsidiary of William Dean Singleton's Denver-based Media News Group. Ten other weeklies operated by North Jersey Newspapers Co. in Union and Warren counties will be kept by Media News. Markey would not disclose the price of the purchase. A newspaper industry analyst, however, estimated the price at $40 million to $50 million, although the total may be lower because the deal does not include real estate or the Herald & News' out-of-date presses.

John Morton, president of a Maryland consulting firm that analyzes media companies, said it is no surprise that Singleton was willing to part with the Herald & News. Singleton's sale of North Jersey Newspapers comes just weeks after Garden State Newspapers, another of his companies, announced that it would purchase the Press-Telegram of Long Beach, Calif., from Knight-Ridder Inc. "He's trying to `cluster' his papers, and if this is the last one in northern New Jersey, I suspect it's something he was planning to sell for some time," Morton said. Morton said that if the Herald & News were the only paper in its market, it might fetch as much as $1,400 per reader, or roughly $75 million. Because the North Jersey market is a competitive one, however, the purchase price most likely is considerably smaller.
Received via NewsEDGE from Desktop Data, Inc.: 11/21/97 03:37:2

Dow Jones & Co.'s (DJ) board voted Thursday to put its Dow Jones Markets unit up for sale, The New York Times reported Friday, citing a person close to Dow Jones. On Wednesday, the company said Dow Jones Markets will focus on competitive strengths in content and its workstation product line, while continuing to examine all alternatives. The company also said it will cut the unit's staff by 200 to 300 by early 1998, while scaling back the investment program for Dow Jones Markets. Dow Jones added that it plans a "sizable" fourth-quarter charge, reflecting a write-down of goodwill, severance and other costs. According to the Times, the person close to Dow Jones said an analysis of Dow Jones Markets is expected to be prepared and completed in about three weeks and will then be available to prospective buyers. The Times said possible buyers include Bloomberg LP (X.BBG); Reuters Holdings PLC (RTRSY); Thomson Corp. (T.TOC); and Welsh, Carson, Anderson & Stowe, the investment company that owns Bridge News.
Received via NewsEDGE from Desktop Data, Inc.: 11/21/97 02:28:35

Axel Springer Verlag AG Chairman Juergen Richter will step down from his position at the end of the year, the company said. The German media group said that "after events of the last few weeks and publicized disparagements against (Richter), continuation of his contract cannot occur." Mr. Richter will continue performing all functions of chairman until Dec. 31, Springer said. In recent weeks, various German newspapers have speculated that Mr. Richter would be asked to step down, due to disagreements over his management style. Springer didn't say who would replace Mr. Richter, and company officials weren't immediately available to comment.

Axel Springer Verlag AG is a major German publishing and broadcasting group. Its principal operations are in newspapers, including the country's top-circulation tabloid "Bild" and daily newspaper "Die Welt." Springer also has magazine and television operations.
Copyright (c) 1997 Dow Jones and Company, Inc.

Dow Jones & Co. said it plans to acquire the roughly 30% it doesn't already own of IDD Enterprises L.P. and sell parts of the financial-publishing, software and on-line services concern. Terms weren't disclosed. Dow Jones said it also plans to restructure IDD as part of a continuing program to shed noncore businesses. Under the restructuring plan, Dow Jones said it sold IDD's publishing operations, including magazines Investment Dealer's Digest and Mergers & Acquisitions Journal, to Securities Data Publishing, a unit of Thomson Corp. Dow Jones said it agreed to sell IDD's retail investment-services operations to a management group led by Leonard W. Hirschfeld, currently senior vice president with IDD. Mr. Hirschfeld will leave IDD to head the new business. The major remaining IDD asset to be kept by Dow Jones is Tradeline, a market information database used by investment banks and financial-services and information companies. In addition to IDD, Dow Jones publishes The Wall Street Journal, The Wall Street Journal Interactive Edition, Barron's magazine, electronic business information services including Dow Jones Markets and the Dow Jones Newswires, and the Ottaway group of community newspapers. Dow Jones also produces business television programming.
Copyright (c) 1997 Dow Jones and Company, Inc.

Saturday, November 15, 1997

11/15/97: Thomson, Simon&Schuster, KnightRidder,,

Thomson Corp.: Publishing, Travel Units Help Boost Earnings 14%
Stephen King And Simon & Schuster In Book Deal
Knight-Ridder Sells Newspaper
Ziff-Davis And Warner Publisher Services Announce Revolutionary Magazine Distribution Agreement
Golden Books Family Entertainment
Avon Products, Inc. And Hachette Filipacchi
Idg Books Worldwide To Buy Mis: And M&T Computer Presses From Henry Holt
Oracle 8 Selected As Database To Fuel The Unisys Hermes Publishing System
Amazon.Com And @Home Network Sign Multi-Year Agreement To Sell Books Over The @Home Service
Oxford University Press And Imark Announce Electronic Publishing Agreement
CMP Media Expands Internet Management Team With The Addition Of Two New Positions
Princeton Media Group Inc. Announces New Chief Financial Officer


Thomson Corp., buoyed by higher earnings from its publishing and travel operations, reported a 14% increase in third-quarter earnings and boosted its quarterly dividend by 6.9%. Thomson, Toronto, reported third-quarter earnings of US$342 million, or 56 cents a share, compared with $301 million, or 50 cents a share, a year earlier. Revenue was $2.74 billion, up 10% from $2.49 billion a year earlier. Thomson, which has interests in newspapers, publishing, databases and travel services, increased its quarterly dividend to 15.5 U.S. cents a share from 14.5 cents a share. Thomson rose 1.50 Canadian dollars (US$1.07) to C$35.50 in Toronto Stock Exchange trading.

WSJviaNewsEDGE Copyright (c) 1997 Dow Jones and Company, Inc. Received via NewsEDGE from Desktop Data, Inc.: 11/07/97 02:15:18

Best-selling author Stephen King and Simon & Schuster struck a tentative deal Thursday to publish his novel ``Bag of Bones'' in an unconventional arrangement that will give the horror writer a share of nearly 50 percent of the profits. The negotiations came after King's highly unusual public search for a new company to replace Viking, his longtime publisher. His original $17 million asking price prompted much complaining in the publishing industry that such a conventional deal was a money-losing proposition. But Thursday, Simon & Schuster, a unit of Viacom Inc., announced a three-book ``co-publishing venture'' with King that will give him a share of the profits and of the risks and responsibilities for pricing, marketing and packaging his books. King, who was traveling to New York for a meeting with Simon & Schuster on the agreement, could not be reached for comment. According to a person close to the negotiations, King will share in almost 50 percent of the profits and will receive an advance that is small by his standards - almost $2 million a book. He will not receive bonuses or royalties. The three books are ``Bag of Bones,'' a collection of short stories and a work on the craft of writing.

NYTviaNewsEDGE Copyright (c) 1997 The New York Times Co.

MIAMI – Knight-Ridder Inc. said it sold the Long Beach Press-Telegram to Garden State Newspapers Inc. for an undisclosed price. The sale completes Knight-Ridder's previously announced plan to sell five newspapers. Garden State Newspapers is a unit of Affiliated Newspapers Inc., Denver.

WSJviaNewsEDGE Copyright (c) 1997 Dow Jones and Company, Inc. Received via NewsEDGE from Desktop Data, Inc.: 11/10/97 02:08:13

Entire Stable of Ziff-Davis Magazines to Receive Increased Distribution and Exposure at the Retail Level

NEW YORK, Nov. 11 /PRNewswire/ -- Ziff-Davis, a SOFTBANK Company, and Warner Publisher Services (WPS), a TimeWarner Company, announced today an agreement whereby the entire 13-title line of Ziff-Davis paid-circulation magazines in the U.S. will be distributed nationally by WPS. In announcing the new agreement, Claude Sheer, President, ZD Publishing, and Dan Rubin, President of WPS, emphasized the unique benefits of this new publishing partnership. Rubin said, "We're combining the strengths of three unique industry leaders: Ziff-Davis, the world's leading publisher of computer and video game magazines; the vast distribution capabilities of WPS; plus retail-level merchandising and marketing support from Time Distribution Services. We believe it's a fortuitous combination of resources that will help raise Ziff- Davis' already strong, newsstand sales to new heights." In discussing the agreement, James Gerth, ZD Single Copy Sales and Marketing Director, explained: "This new arrangement will allow us to more efficiently serve both the wholesaler and retailer communities. Given the big changes we've seen recently in the newsstand environment, we're especially pleased, and optimistic, now that this unique agreement is in place." Sheer added, "While Ziff-Davis has seen tremendous growth in its Internet business, growth for all ZD print products remains strong, including those for our flagship, PC Magazine, as well as for Computer Shopper, PC Computing, and Electronic Gaming Monthly." Sheer continued, "Magazines are a vital part of our business, and newsstand sales are integral to our publishing plans. We believe this new agreement will carry us to even greater growth in this important area. That's good news for us, and also for our readers, advertisers, and the wholesalers and retailers who handle our publications."

SOURCE Ziff Davis

Business Brief -- GOLDEN BOOKS FAMILY ENTERTAINMENT: Loss Narrows Amid Decline In Costs From Restructuring

Golden Books Family Entertainment Inc. reported that its third-quarter net loss narrowed, in part because of a decrease in costs related to a continuing restructuring program. The New York company posted a net loss of $17.9 million, or 76 cents a share, compared with a loss of $96.8 million, or $4.29 a share, a year earlier. Results for the latest quarter include a restructuring charge of $3.3 million, or 12 cents a share. Results for the year-earlier period include charges of $80.1 million, or $3.01 a share, largely for restructuring. Revenue decreased 21% to $53.3 million from $67.5 million. The company's main operations include children's publishing and entertainment products for children and families.

WSJviaNewsEDGE Copyright (c) 1997 Dow Jones and Company, Inc. Received via NewsEDGE from Desktop Data, Inc.: 11/12/97 02:15:53


NEW YORK, Nov. 14 /PRNewswire/ -- Avon Products, Inc. (NYSE: AVP) and Hachette Filipacchi Magazines today announced that they will launch a new magazine for women. The two companies -- global leaders in their respective fields -- will together publish Athena: Common Sense, Uncommon Style, designed to provide insightful information about beauty, well-being, and lifestyle for women. "Athena represents a new dimension in publishing," explains David Pecker, President and Chief Executive Officer, Hachette Filipacchi Magazines. "The magazine will deliver the spirit of beauty and high fashion along with accessible information and service. We are thrilled to be in this unique joint publishing venture with Avon."
Debuting in the U.S. with the May/June launch issue in April 1998, Athena is set for a bimonthly schedule. The publication will be initially distributed through the 440,000 U.S. Avon Sales Representatives, as well as newsstands. Cover price will be $3.50, with special pricing for Avon Representatives and their customers. Future global opportunities will be explored to bring Athena to other markets around the world, tapping the powerful distribution network of more than 2 million Avon Sales Representatives worldwide. In both domestic and global markets, Avon's key objective for Athena is to strengthen the company's image and role as a beauty authority. Avon will be the exclusive beauty advertiser in Athena, but the publication will be open to all advertisers in non-competitive categories, such as consumer packaged goods, travel, and automotive, who wish to reach the Athena reader.
Hachette Filipacchi Magazines currently publishes 29 consumer titles reaching over 47 million readers, including American Photo, Audio, Best Selling Home Plans, Boating, Car and Driver, Car Stereo Review, Cycle World, ELLE, ELLE Decor, Family Life, Flying, George, HOME, Metropolitan Home, Popular Photography, Premiers, Road & Track, Showboats International, Stereo review, TopModel, Travel Holiday, Video, Woman's Day, and Eating Well, as well as a number of quarterlies and special publications. HFM is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Hachette Filipacchi Medias, the world's largest magazine publisher, with diverse holdings in printing, newspaper, film production, and outdoor advertising.


FOSTER CITY, Calif., Nov. 12 /PRNewswire/ -- IDG Books Worldwide, Inc. has signed a letter of intent to purchase MIS: Press and M&T Books from Henry Holt Publishers in New York for an undisclosed sum. The deal takes Holt out of trade computer book publishing and reinforces IDG Books Worldwide's leadership in technology publishing. IDG Books Worldwide, Inc., founded in 1990, is the number two computer book publisher with total FY1997 gross revenues in excess of $150 million. Final terms of the agreement are expected by the end of this month.
IDG Books Worldwide President and Publisher Steven Berkowitz characterized the acquisition as a strategic move in an industry that is seeing more consolidation. "MIS: Press and M&T Books produce well-written books and series that are in keeping with our commitment to publishing high quality editorial content. Our strengths in building and marketing brands will help us to expand our market share in the tightening book publishing arena."
IDG Books Worldwide, best known for its 40 million selling ... For Dummies(R) series, has made branding a phenomenon in book publishing. The company has created highly identifiable, successful brands for users ranging from beginners using the ...Simplified (R) 4-color illustrated books to high- end professionals using the certification series for Novell and Microsoft engineers and system administrators. IDG Books Worldwide, Inc. is a subsidiary of IDG, the world's leading IT media, research and exposition company. IDG publishes more than 285 computer magazines and newspapers and 500 book titles and offers the largest network of technology specific sites around the world, located at, which comprises more than 170 targeted Web sites in 45 countries. IDG is also a leading producer of 110 computer-related expositions worldwide, and provides IT market analysis through 49 offices in 41 countries worldwide. Company information is available at Information about IDG Books is available at SOURCE IDG Books Worldwide, Inc.


REDWOOD SHORES, Calif., Nov. 12 /PRNewswire/ -- Oracle Corp. (Nasdaq: ORCL) and Unisys (NYSE: UIS), a leading newspaper-system supplier, today announced they will deliver an integrated system, based on Sun Microsystem's Solaris platform, that answers the increasingly complex information technology needs of the publishing industry. Unisys has chosen Oracle8(TM) to power the Unix-Based version of Hermes, its global, integrated publishing system. Hermes will meet user requirements for scalability, reliability and tight-system integration in order to redefine workflow, reduce costs and help in the migration to electronic publishing. This combination will enable publishers to streamline their business from editorial, production and archiving processes to management of all news information electronically to support for hundreds of concurrent users.
"The core competencies of Oracle8 -- the ability to handle more data, support more users, deliver results faster and at a lower price - directly address the needs being expressed in the publishing industry today," said Polly Sumner, senior vice president of Communications Industry, Oracle Corp. "Unisys' Hermes system with Oracle8 as the database backbone provides publishers with the ability to globally manage and deliver information for both traditional and electronic publishing mediums."
"For publishing groups that are looking to reengineer their publishing systems and to reengineer their productions processes, the Unisys Publishing Solutions offer global, scaleable, integrated applications," said Franco Giglio, director of Publishing Center of Excellence Systems, Unisys. "Oracle8 provides the database engine needed to support the scalability and reliability requirements of our customers." The Hermes publishing system, a major component of the Unisys Publishing Solutions, has been expressly designed for metropolitan newspapers which face large organizational issues and complex production processes in highly mission-critical environments. Hermes is applicable for both text-driven and layout-driven publications, as it can support several editorial organizations' needs for design layout, text and headline editing, image processing, ad display creation, page planning, production tracking and full-page output.



SEATTLE, and REDWOOD CITY, Calif., Nov. 10 /PRNewswire/ --, Inc. (Nasdaq: AMZN), the leading online book retailer, and @Home Network (Nasdaq: ATHM), the leader in high-speed Internet services via the cable infrastructure, today announced a multi-year agreement whereby ( will be the premier bookseller throughout the @Home service. @Home users will have high-speed, direct access to browse and purchase books from's catalog of more than 2.5 million books. These services are expected to be integrated into @Home's service by the end of the year. This agreement marks the first time has formed a strategic alliance with a cable Internet service provider.
Based in Redwood City, California, @Home Network ( distributes high-speed interactive services to residences and businesses using its own network architecture and a variety of transport options including the cable industry's hybrid-fiber coaxial infrastructure. The cable connection provides users significant increases in speed over conventional Internet services. Leveraging the "always on" attributes of cable, @Home allows for unique multimedia applications that go beyond current Web experiences. Since its founding in May 1995, @Home Network has reached affiliate agreements with eight leading cable companies in North America, including Tele-Communications Inc., Cablevision Systems Corp., Comcast Corporation , Cox Communications, InterMedia Partners, Marcus Cable, Rogers Cablesystems Limited, and Shaw Communications


RESTON, Va.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Nov. 6, 1997--Imark Technologies Inc. (NASDAQ: MAXX) a leading provider of electronic commerce solutions to the information industry, announces an agreement with Oxford University Press USA (OUP) to develop an e-commerce version of "The Computational Intelligence Library" to be available commercially in 1998. Through this collaboration, OUP will employ Imark's award winning NET-MAX(TM) Internet billing system, which enables information providers to outsource the complete development and maintenance of all electronic commerce functions. Imark's NET-MAX metering and billing system is the winner of the 1997 Information Industry Association Award for the Best Enabling Technology of the Year.
The Computational Intelligence Library, a joint publication of OUP and the Institute of Physics Publishing, is a comprehensive reference tool for computer scientists, engineers, psychologists, mathematicians, and physicists, providing a continuously updated overview of the dynamic field of Computational Intelligence. The Computational Library is positioned as an all-encompassing reference that collates research findings from various sources into one authoritative work. Imark will assist OUP in optimizing the online version of the library, designing an online customer registration system with tracking and reporting of customer usage, and advising on possible future enhancements to the pricing model. "We are very pleased to enter into this exciting new relationship with Imark Technologies. What Imark offers Oxford University Press is the ability to bring a niche product to market quickly and cost-effectively with an award winning e-commerce system to back it up" said Royalynn O'Connor, Online product director at Oxford University Press-USA.



MANHASSET, N.Y.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Nov. 11, 1997-- CMP Media's (Nasdaq: CMPX) rapidly-growing CMPnet, the technology network at, has created two new management positions and concurrently named a new Associate Publisher for sales and a new Director of Marketing. Chris Tice, most recently CMPnet's Associate Publisher, Sales and Marketing, has assumed the new position of Associate Publisher, Business Development and will retain responsibility for marketing and research. Meryl Otis, previously Associate Publisher for NetGuide Magazine, has been named Associate Publisher, Sales for CMPnet. Aimee Levine joins CMPnet from Time Warner as Director of Marketing. Helen Flaum, formerly a Director of Information Technology in CMP's corporate IT department, has moved over to the Internet Media Group as Director of Operations for the group, which produces CMPnet. In announcing the staffing changes, Rebecca S. Barna, Vice President/Group Publisher of the Internet Media Group, said: "These management moves reflect our commitment to bring users the best information and advertisers the most targeted and cost-effective buy in technology online."


PALM BEACH, Fla.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Nov. 10, 1997--Princeton Media Group Inc. (Nasdaq:PMGIF) announced Monday that Hugo Barreca has been named the new chief financial officer for the company. Robert F. Kendall, formerly CFO, has become senior vice president of Finance. Barreca, who joined the company in September 1997, brings over 20 years of experience in the publishing industry, including senior positions with Time Inc., The New York Times Magazine Group and Gruner+Jahr USA Publishing. His responsibilities have included strategic business planning, financial planning and management, contract negotiations and purchasing, and computer systems development, including inventory database systems, financial management systems, logistic models and telecommunications systems. Barreca received an M.B.A. from New York University and a J.D. from Fordham School of Law, as well as other academic degrees and professional honors. Barreca will be responsible for the company's overall financial planning and management. He will also direct the company-wide consolidation of current operations and implement the company's expansion program through continued acquisitions of related business operations in publishing, advertising, websites and other related media.

Friday, November 07, 1997

11/7/97: MacmillanUK, Primedia, Reuters,

Macmillan, Ltd (UK) name new CEO:
Newspaper Circulation Figures Down
Outlook for Contract (Magazine) Publishing
Expectations for Professional Publishing
K-III Begins New Era; Reports Record Third Quarter; Announces Name Change and Growth Strategy
Charles Siegel Named Chief Operating Officer of K-III Consumer Magazine Division Search Continues for President of Media Group:
Another Celebrity Book Bites (the Dust)
News Corp. Posts a 9.5% Profit Boost For 1st Quarter, Topping Expectations
The Mouth Strikes…TED TURNER
Reuters and Chutzpah: biggest Penguin Customer
Publish Your Own Book
Golden Books and Disney Licensing
Leading Online News Delivery Services Merge as NewsEdge
Interactive Journal Exceeds 150,000 Mark In Paid Subscribers:
Technology Brief: Easing of Indian Internet Rules

Recent News:

Macmillan, Ltd (UK) name new CEO:
RICHARD CHARKIN, former chief executive of Reed International Books, is to return to mainstream publishing as chief executive of Macmillan, Ltd. Mr Charkin, who will be responsible for all Macmillan companies apart from St. Martin's Press and Macmillan Magazines, succeeds Nicholas Byam Shaw, who is 64 and has worked at Macmillan for 34 years. Mr Byam Shaw will act as deputy chairman of the company and Mr Charkin and John Sargent, chief executive of St. Martin's Press and Ray Barker, managing director of Macmillan Magazines, will report to him. Dieter von Holtzbrinck, of Holtzbrinck, the privately-owned German publishers that bought Macmillan two and a half years ago, will become chairman of Macmillan. (The London Times)

Newspaper Circulation Figures Down:
Circulation figures released on Monday show Sunday sales dropping at many of the biggest Sunday papers. Five of the top eight Sunday editions showed declines according to ABC figures -three of them, The Washington Post, NY Daily News and The Chicago Tribune showed large declines. The Daily News sold 80,000 fewer newspapers for the prior six months than in the year before. Sunday circulation is important to newspapers because a Sunday paper reaps about three times the advertising revenue of a weekday paper. The Daily News, which has the country's sixth-largest weekday circulation, attributed the drop in Sunday readership to a price increase in April, to $1.50 from $1. (Editor and Publisher)

Outlook for Contract (Magazine) Publishing:
USA Today reported on the rise in the number of "lifestyle" magazines with "splashy graphics" that are sponsored by companies like Mercedes-Benz (Momentum) or Philip Morris (Unlimited) Land Rover (LandRover Journal). According to USA Today, "These magazines are a booming business for mainstream publishers. Magazine Publishers of America estimates that contract publishing generates more than $1.3 billion in annual revenue for publishers. There are some ethical issues as these corporate magazines increasingly look like independent magazines. Also, the report says, "Media watchdogs grumble about cozy relations between marketers and publishers." (USA Today, 12B, Nov. 1997)

Expectations for Professional Publishing:
The latest media industry mega-deal between Dutch giant Wolters Kluwer and Reed Elsevier, two of the leading publishers in legal, medical, scientific/technical and business markets, is another sign of strength in one of the segments of the publishing industry showing growth in 1997. Sales of professional books, journals, newsletters and online data are projected to grow 6.3 percent to $11.28 billion in 1997, according to Publishing for Professional Markets: 1997-98: Review, Trends and Forecast, the latest research report from Cowles/Simba Information.

Trade book markets are projected to remain flat this year. The industry reached an estimated $10.62 billion in 1996, up 6 percent from 1995, according to the report. Thomson Corp. was the leading professional publisher, with worldwide sales from professional information at an estimated $3.39 billion in 1996. Legal publishing remains the largest segment of the professional publishing industry, with revenues projected to reach $4.24 billion in 1997, up 5.9 percent from 1996. According to the report, books, online and newsletter/looseleaf are the leading delivery methods for legal information and Thomson is the leading legal publisher-at least until the Reed Elsevier/Wolters Kluwer merger is completed early next year. Scientific/technical is the second largest segment of the industry, followed by medical and business. Journals represent the largest medium for sci/tech information, while books account for the largest portion of medical information sales.

Online and books dominate the business segment. Books are the leading overall medium for professional information, accounting for $4.23 billion, or 37.5 percent of all sales in 1997. Thomson Corp., which generated $725 million in professional book revenues and Times Mirror, which generated $530.4 million, were the leading publishers of professional books in 1996. Journals represented the second-largest segment of the professional publishing industry, followed by online, newsletters/looseleafs, directories and "other" media, which includes some CD-ROM revenues and revenues from miscellaneous media, such as audio and video. The professional publishing industry is projected to grow 6 percent in 1998, 5.8 percent in 1999 and 5.9 percent in 2000, according to the report.

The legal segment is forecast to remain the largest and books will continue to be the leading medium for professional information over the next three years. However, online is forecast to surpass journals as the second-largest medium by 1999. Publishing for Professional Markets, 1997-98 includes an overall ranking of worldwide revenues for leading professional publishers, rankings for the leading publishers in each of the four industry segments-legal, scientific/technical, medical and business, as well as rankings of leading publishers by each major professional publishing medium-books, journals, directories, newsletters/looseleafs and online. In addition, the report provides revenue forecasts through 2000 for each of the four market segments and each major medium and detailed profiles for 34 leading professional and university press publishers. The report costs and can be obtained by calling Bill MacRae at Cowles Simba, or by e-mail at Business Editors STAMFORD, CT--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Nov. 3, 1997--

K-III Begins New Era; Reports Record Third Quarter; Announces Name Change and Growth Strategy:
NEW YORK, Oct. 30 /PRNewswire/ -- K-III Communications Corporation (NYSE: KCC), today reported that third quarter sales and EBITDA from continuing operations each increased 15.5% setting new records. The parent company of such prime media brands as Seventeen, Soap Opera Digest, Weekly Reader, Channel One, Ward's Automotive and The World Almanac, also reaffirmed its growth strategy: focus on its fastest growing businesses, complete certain divestitures and change the Company's name to PRIMEDIA. This quarter, the Company begins presenting results from continuing operations which exclude businesses that have been, or will be, divested. "The continuing operations results show our true earnings power," said William Reilly, chairman and chief executive officer. "As just one measure, EBITDA margins were more than two percentage points higher in the nine-month period when the divestitures are removed." Results from Continuing Operations (Excluding businesses divested in or held for sale)

($ millions) 3Q97 % Change 3Q96 9 mos %Change 9 mos 96
Sales $305.7 15.5% $264.8 $884.9 16.1% $762.0
EBITDA $63.4 15.5% $54.9 $192.3 15.1% $167.0
Margin 20.7% 20.7% 21.7% 21.9%

Charles Siegel Named Chief Operating Officer of K-III Consumer Magazine Division Search Continues for President of Media Group:
NEW YORK, Oct. 22 /PRNewswire/ -- William F. Reilly, chairman and CEO of K-III Communications (NYSE: KCC) announced today that Charles Siegel, 51, has been named to the newly created post of chief operating officer for its consumer magazine division. Siegel has held several general management positions at K-III, Simon & Schuster, and Macmillan Publishing Company. Most recently Siegel has been president and CEO of K-III's Newbridge Communications. He will manage the team responsible for the 24 consumer magazines in the K-III Consumer Magazine stable. K-III's consumer magazines include New York, Chicago, Seventeen, Automobile, American Baby, Modern Bride, Soap Opera Digest and Soap Opera Weekly. Siegel will report to K-III chairman and CEO Reilly until a replacement is named for the late Harry McQuillen who was president of the K-III Media Group. A search for a President of the K-III Media Group is still underway. learning and workplace learning), and information (consumer directories and business directories).

Another Celebrity Book Bites (the Dust):
Now you can get Paula Barbieri's book at a steep discount--$9.95, instead of the $23.95 list price. And in plenty of time for stocking stuffing. Barbieri's "The Other Woman," a memoir of her relationship with O.J. Simpson, arrived to a thunderous ho-hum recently, despite a $3-million advance that had been paid to the former model by a confident Little, Brown and Co. Rather than have to take back thousands and thousands of unsold copies, the publisher is offering booksellers a credit on each book sold, allowing them to slash the price. In the business, it's known as "remaindering a book in place"--a polite description for a book that is fizzling. Cowles Business Media

News Corp. Posts a 9.5% Profit Boost For 1st Quarter, Topping Expectations ---- By John Lippman:
Rupert Murdoch's News Corp. posted a better-than-expected 9.5% profit increase for its fiscal first quarter, citing a robust U.S. television-advertising market, and sounded an upbeat note about the current quarter ending Dec. 31. But per-share results fell, reflecting an increase in shares outstanding at the acquisitive Australian company. And pretax operating profit fell 43% at the Filmed Entertainment unit, as the Fox film and TV studio faced a tough comparison with a year-earlier quarter fattened by megahit "Independence Day." For the first quarter, ended Sept. 30, Australia-based News Corp. reported that net income rose 9.5% to US$243 million, or 26 cents an American depository receipt, from $222 million, or 27 cents an ADR, a year earlier. Revenue for the quarter increased 16% to $2.9 billion while cash flow -- earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization -- for the media giant rose 23% to $436 million. Operating profit before special items was up 7% to $240 million. The Wall Street Journal via Dow Jones

The Mouth Strikes…
TED TURNER, the founder of Cable News Network, yesterday reignited the personal feud with Rupert Murdoch by once again likening the chairman of The News Corporation to Hitler. Mr Turner, in London with his wife, Jane Fonda, was challenged yesterday by William Shawcross, author of an unauthorised biography of Mr Murdoch, whether it was true that he had likened the News Corp chairman to Hitler at a lunch on Monday. "I didn't use that word," said Mr Turner, who added that he had instead likened Mr Murdoch to "the former leader of the Third Reich". Mr Shawcross asked the American media mogul, who is now a vice-president of Time Warner, whether it was "appropriate for a businessman like you ­ who pretends and purports to be working for the benefit of mankind ­ to compare a competitor to Hitler?" "If the shoe fits, wear it," replied Mr Turner, who was in turn accused of a "stupid and cheap shot" by Mr Shawcross. Raymond Snoddy - London Times

Reuters and Chutzpah:
REUTERS, the online information company, is to charge many of its institutional clients for correcting the millennium bug that threatens to paralyze its equipment in the year 2000. The company, which yesterday detailed its approach to the problem, said that clients who need their computers changed overnight or at the weekend could be sent a bill for the privilege. The move marks a distinct break from the industry norm, where companies usually agree that their customers should not be asked to pay for the supplier's failure to plan for the date change. Raymond Snoddy - The London Times. biggest Penguin Customer:
THE Penguin Group, the publisher owned by Pearson, yesterday said that, the Internet bookstore, may soon be Penguin's largest customer. Michael Lynton, Penguin chairman and chief executive, said that Amazon bought $1 million of books from Penguin last year. This year's total looked likely to be $10 million, and the growth rate was 40 per cent a quarter. Mr Lynton said: "If this current growth continues in the next two to three years, they will probably be our largest customer." More than 90 per cent of Penguin's US backlist sales come from Amazon. The enormous Internet backlist sales, Mr Lynton said, "could be of huge importance to us".

Golden Books and Disney Licensing:
Disney Licensing Deal Will Cost Golden Books At Least $47.7M (Simba/Book Publishing Report) Golden Books Family Entertainment will pay the Walt Disney Co. at least $47.7 million in royalties over the next four years for its recently extended licensing agreement, according to a document the company filed recently with the Securities and Exchange Commission. Golden Books has agreed to pay at least $7.4 million for the period between Jan. 1 and Sept. 30, 1998, then $11.7 million in the second, $13.3 million in the third and $15.3 million in the fourth year of the agreement, the document said. Cowles Business Media

Reed Elsevier Seeking Content Acquisitions:
Calling content "the crown jewel," Dutch multimedia publisher Reed-Elsevier said it is considering snapping up new content partners. Chatting with executives at a Financial Times publishing conference, Reed-Elsevier chairman Nigel Stapleton countered rumors that his firm was on the hunt to buy a software firm, saying "the thing that we're most looking to acquire is more and more content." Reed-Elsevier will be going through a little consolidation itself should its prospective merger with Amsterdam-based publishing giant Wolters Kluwer NV go through. The London Times.

Online Publishing:

Publish Your Own Book:
Nov. 3, 1997-- 1stBooks Champions Aspiring Authors, Bypassing "Gatekeepers" and makes it possible for authors to "publish" their work and still retain full legal ownership and rights. For less than $500, they will digitize an author's book and publish it on the Web, along with a "digital book jacket." This "virtual cover" offers the prospective reader much the same information as a traditional book jacket: a cover design or illustration, a summary of the book and a biographical sketch of the author. There is even a free two or three page excerpt from the text itself, for the potential buyer who might like to leaf through a few virtual pages before making a purchase. "A typical book in the library can be purchased and downloaded for $5.95 to $9.95, less than the cost of most paperbacks. A few highly technical books are offered for as much as $25.00. As hardbacks, they would probably cost $50 or more," The buyer can download the book electronically, and typically is offered a choice of formats. For authors who have gone the subsidized publishing route, the site also offers the opportunity of selling traditional bound copies of their books. The site also offers authors full-service accounting and record keeping, as well as detailed marketing, customer tracking and prospect-to-sale ratio information. And authors receive a commission or royalty of 40% of the selling price, less any credit card fees, on each "book" sold.

Leading Online News Delivery Services Merge as NewsEdge:
Established electronic news aggregators Desktop Data Inc. and Individual Inc., both of Burlington, MA, are merging companies and services in a stock swap deal to be closed in first-quarter 1998. The new company will be titled NewsEDGE Corp. -- named after the flagship news delivery service of Desktop Data -- and headed by Desktop Data founder and CEO Donald L. McLagan. Combined, the companies drew $75 million in revenues during the year ending Sept. 30, 1997 -- a 35% growth from the year prior.

Interactive Journal Exceeds 150,000 Mark In Paid Subscribers:
Dow Jones & Co. said The Wall Street Journal Interactive Edition has attracted more than 150,000 paid subscribers just over a year after it began charging for access to its site on the World Wide Web. The Interactive Journal has the largest circulation of any paid-subscription site on the Web and is among the top sites for generating advertising revenue on the Internet, according to Thomas Baker, business director of the Interactive Journal.

Technology Brief: Easing of Indian Internet Rules:
The Indian government said it has lifted all restrictions on the number of private Internet-service providers allowed to operate in the state-controlled Internet market and on the fees they charge subscribers. The companies, however, will still have to obtain government licenses to operate. The government said the aim of the move is to bring Internet connections to as many as two million Indians within two or three years, from 40,000 now. Until now, the state-run Videsh Sanchar Nigam Ltd. has controlled Internet access in New Delhi, Bombay, Calcutta, Madras, Bangalore and Pune, while the Department of Telecommunications provided access in the rest of the country. AP-Dow Jones The Asian Wall Street Journal via Dow Jones

Saturday, November 01, 1997

11/1/97: Harpercollins, KnightRidder, SimonShuster,, Readers Digest,

New Head Of Harpercollins Publishers
A.H. Belo Corp.: Net Income Declines 21% But Beats Analyst Forecast
Apple Begins Program To Support Position In Education Market
Reader's Digest Posts $56.4 Million Loss, Citing Weak Mailings
Knight Ridder Sells Newspapers
Harpercollins Signs Jewel
Bookwire Offers Redesign
Bookpages - Another Internet Bookstore
Harpercollins Gets Mystery Web Site
Simon & Schuster Recognized For Having Best Commercial Web Site
Amazon Marches On


News Corp. named Jane Friedman, one of the publishing industry's best-regarded executives, to lead HarperCollins Publishers, its troubled book publishing unit.

Ms. Friedman, currently a senior executive at Advance Publications Inc.'s Random House unit, will assume her new position next month. She will succeed Anthea Disney, who last month was elevated to the post of chairman of News America Publishing Group, a newly formed News Corp. unit that includes both HarperCollins and TV Guide magazine. Ms. Friedman will report to Ms. Disney.

HarperCollins has had a variety of problems in recent months. In August, the company said it would take a $270 million charge -- the biggest in the history of book publishing -- to cover write-downs for losses on author advances and unsold books as well as other restructuring costs. Some of News Corp.'s major investors have encouraged Rupert Murdoch to unload the unit, and there have been repeated rumors that he might do so, unsettling the publisher's employees. Ms. Friedman went to Los Angeles to meet with Mr. Murdoch in late September, and she says she came away believing that "he is in it for the long term." She also said HarperCollins's difficulties didn't cause her to hesitate joining the publisher. "They have had some tough knocks," Ms. Friedman said. "But I believe the company has turned the corner, and it now has a pretty clean slate."

The Wall Street Journal via Dow Jones
Copyright (c) 1997 Dow Jones and Company, Inc.

A.H. Belo Corp. said third-quarter net income decreased 21% to $15 million, or 24 cents a share, from $18.9 million, or 42 cents a share, in the year-earlier period. Earnings per-share were affected by the issuance of about 25 million common shares, related to an acquisition. The Dallas television and newspaper concern said sales increased 58% to $319.1 million. The company also said a 51% revenue increase in its newspaper publishing division, combined with strong advertising demand in all of its broadcasting markets, contributed to the earnings results. A survey of analysts by First Call had estimated Belo would report net of 18 cents a share.

Copyright (c) 1997 Dow Jones and Company, Inc.
Received via NewsEDGE from Desktop Data, Inc.: 10/29/97 02:22:31

Apple Computer Inc., seeking to shore up its sagging U.S. education stronghold, has launched a special promotion to credit schools with 10% of the purchase price of computers bought by students' parents.

Under the "Power of 10" program, which began Oct. 15 and is to run through Jan. 31, the schools will be able to use those credits towards purchase of their new Apple computers. The program was conceived by Apple interim Chief Executive Officer Steve Jobs, and is designed to strengthen the company's presence in a market that has been beset by competitors allied around the industry's dominant standard of Microsoft Corp. software and Intel Corp. microprocessors.
Under the promotion's terms, parents can buy directly from Apple any of 10 computer models, including some which previously had been offered only to schools. They can then designate the 10% credit to the K-12 school of their choice. If a school receives 10 of those credits, it can apply those to a free computer.

The Wall Street Journal via Dow Jones
Copyright (c) 1997 Dow Jones and Company, Inc.

Reader's Digest Association Inc. reported a loss of $56.4 million, or 53 cents a share, for the fiscal first quarter, reflecting weak customer response to mailings and costs related to a corporate realignment of operations.

The loss for the quarter ended Sept. 30 compares with year-earlier net income of $34.6 million, or 32 cents a share. Revenue fell 13% to $561 million from $644 million. The latest results included a pretax charge of $70 million, or 49 cents a share, reflecting severance costs for staff reductions in Europe, the U.S. and at the corporate level, as well as a discontinuation of certain businesses.

The results reflected increased spending in product development and direct-marketing operations, the company said. George V. Grune, chairman and chief executive, said revenue in the quarter reflected lower customer response to company mailings and fewer mail solicitations sent out in major markets.

Revenue from the U.S.-based special-interest magazines and Reader's Digest magazine were higher than last year, reflecting gains in both circulation and advertising.

Copyright (c) 1997 Dow Jones and Company, Inc.

MIAMI -- Knight-Ridder Inc. said it agreed to sell three newspapers that it had previously put on the block -- the Boca Raton News, Florida; the Union-Recorder, in Milledgeville, Ga.; and the suburban Newberry Observer, in South Carolina -- to Community Newspaper Holdings Inc., Louisville, Ky. Terms weren't disclosed, but media giant Knight-Ridder said the transaction includes the transfer to Knight-Ridder of the Daily Sun in Warner Robins, Ga.; the Byron Gazette, a Georgia weekly, and a shopper, also in Georgia. The transaction is expected to close by Thanksgiving.

Copyright (c) 1997 Dow Jones and Company, Inc.

HarperCollins was very busy this week and they topped off their activity by contributing to one of the major problems in the publishing industry. HarperCollins bid and won -for $2MM- a book of poetry and a memoir from Jewel, the 23-year-old photogenic folk singer whose debut album Pieces of You has been on the charts for two years and sold six million copies to date. Regardless, many analysts have bemoaned the tendency by publishers for overpaying for book rights for ‘media stars’ who’s celebrity it turns out is fleeting.

Jewel's poetry book, which had been shopped around last year and was rumored to have received offers at that time of up to $1.5 million, is now expected to be published in June, followed by a memoir (she’s 23!) in fall 1998.


BookWire -- -- Wednesday offered a redesign featuring daily news, original reviews and features, and a new "behind-the-scenes" column from industry insiders. FLAP, a daily column covering insider news and behind the scenes intrigue about the book business is part of the redesign. Other new original BookWire content includes Soapbox, a place where people in and around the book business can talk about everything from their favorite books to hot trends in book selling, and Publisher's Spotlight, a sponsored feature where publishers and authors put their titles in the spotlight, and readers can see the cover, read flap copy, excerpts, testimonials, and more.

For busy executives, preparing for Christmas can often be a nightmare. New U.K. Internet bookstore Bookpages, however, is hoping to lend a helping hand. A recent addition to the bloody Internet book wars, Bookpages is looking to capture an audience by offering snazzy new services to its site. Top of the list are new features for hurried Christmas shoppers.

First, swing by Bookpages' gift-selector service. The Bookpages staff have sifted through their 1.2 million titles and put together a list of books for specific friends and relations. Need something quick for a nine-year-old niece? Bookpages suggests the Roald Dahl Treasury or the Dorling Kindersley World Atlas. Prices are reasonable: Because it can cut out overhead costs, Bookpages manages to offer most wares at a discount below traditional bookstores.

Buyers, for their part, also get a present. Hoping to attract more customers, Bookpages offers a loyalty program. Once registered, buyers receive one Bookpoint for every 20 pence spent. Members with more than 500 points can redeem them against Bookpages books. Christmas gift recommendations however, earn buyers 50 points a shot.

Copyright (c) 1997 Dow Jones and Company, Inc.

Following a trend that is becoming increasingly familiar, HarperCollins has entered a co-marketing agreement with online mystery publisher Newfront of San Francisco to have advertising and HarperCollins content featured on The Online Mystery Network ( “The HarperCollins Mystery Corner” will be incorporated into the Newfront site, and will highlight popular novelists Tony Hillerman, Virginia Lanier and others by providing exclusive peeks at first chapters. will also host banner advertising for the book publisher and run special book promotions.

Newfront believes this alliance will be just the first of many as publishers realize how powerful Internet distribution can be for niche markets.

Cowles/Simba Media Daily 10/31/97
Copyright 1997 Cowles Business Media. All rights reserved.

Technology Managers Forum has named Simon & Schuster's College NewsLink Web Site the "Best Vehicle For Conducting Commerce."

College NewsLink is a unique educational service that brings the leading newspapers of the world to the college campus via the World Wide Web. For the first time, these stories are organized by academic discipline and linked to other Web sites as well as to print information in textbooks. These links make Simon & Schuster's textbooks are current as today's newspaper. Topics in the news are linked to relevant university Web sites, textbooks, government sites,
political organizations, world leaders and more.

College Newslink is the first time a publisher has created an electronic product sold directly to colleges, and not through bookstores to students.

Recognition for the site was part of The Best Practice Awards, co-sponsored by PC Week and Technology Managers Forum International, a professional organization comprised of IT executives from large organizations. Technology Managers Forum is the only organization in the industry that has an awards program that is designed to establish Best Practices for IT Management

AMAZON MARCHES ON reports another quarterly sales increase. For the third quarter that ended Sept. 30, 1997, sales were $37.9 million, a 36% increase over second-quarter sales and an 808% gain over the $4.2 million reported in the 1996 third quarter. For the first nine months of the year, Amazon reported sales of $81.7 million, it appears likely going into the Christmas buying season they could achieve full year sales of $120MM. For the first nine months of 1996, Amazon had sales of $7.3 million.

Net (Loss) income was higher than prior year periods reflecting increased marketing and sales expenses. For the quarter Amazon had a net loss of $8.5 million, compared to a loss of $2.4 million in the same quarter last year. The loss for the first nine months was $18.2 million, up from $3.5 million.

Amazon noted that cumulative customer accounts increased to over 940,000 by the end of September, compared to 610,000 at the close of June. Repeat customers represented 55% of sales in the period.


There Are More Than 7 Million North American Children With Internet Accounts.

According to Teenage Research Unlimited (TRU), the percentage of teens who say that it is ``in'' to be on-line has jumped from 50 percent in 1994 to 74 percent in 1996 to 88 percent in 1997. It's now on par with dating and partying!

65%of all Book printing jobs are for less than 5,000 units.

18% all of New Yorkers are on line.