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Browsing this Thread:   1 Anonymous Users

Houghton-Mifflin Harcourt
2006/6/5 22:04
From Essex, England
Posts: 2133
There are some rumors on the web that Houghton-Mifflin Harcourt may be in trouble.

"Publisher Houghton-Mifflin Harcourt has put the word out to its some of its editors to stop acquiring new manuscripts, Publishers Weekly reports. Agent Jonathon Lazear tells the industry rag, "I've been in the business a long time and at a couple of houses I worked at, when things were bad, we were asked to cut back. But I've never heard of anything so public."

What exactly this will mean for the general public remains to be seen. According to Houghton-Mifflin Harcourt's vice president of communications, Josef Blumenfeld, "it's a symbol of doing things smarter; it's not an indicator of the end of literature." That makes sense.

Except that he continued, "We have turned off the spigot, but we have a very robust pipeline."

Metaphor alert! The spigot is the thing that delivers a liquid, like water, to the consumer. The consumer relies on a spigot to dispense water when needed. A pipeline conveys a liquid (like water or oil) from its source to -- well, to a series of intermediaries, with the end goal of delivering to the consumer. Through the spigot.

Houghton-Mifflin Harcourt may have a robust pipeline of books in progress -- that's great! But to be clear, what they've done is ceased to buy raw materials (temporarily, they say, in some areas, and this ban can be superseded). They haven't turned off the spigot, which would mean they've stopped selling books. That would be bad for business."

Source: http://latimesblogs.latimes.com/jacke ... 8/11/publishing-indu.html

Posted on: 2008/11/28 23:15

Re: Houghton-Mifflin Harcourt
2006/6/5 22:04
From Essex, England
Posts: 2133
It does not look like things have got a lot better in the last year.

CORRECTED - (OFFICIAL)-Houghton Mifflin owner in debt talks

By Jonathan Stempel

NEW YORK, Jan 14 (Reuters) - The parent of textbook publisher Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Co is in advanced talks to slash its estimated $7 billion debt load by 60 percent, its second debt restructuring in less than a year.

The talks by Education Media and Publishing Group Ltd come as textbook publishers face potential sales declines because state and local governments are limiting spending to cope with budget deficits linked to the weak economy.

Boston-based Houghton Mifflin specializes in textbooks for children from kindergarten to 12th grade. It also publishes Curious George books and the works of J.R.R. Tolkien, including "The Lord of the Rings." The company dates back to 1832.

Houghton Mifflin spokesman Josef Blumenfeld said the restructuring contemplates that equity investors in closely-held Education Media would see their interests "impaired," while retaining their interests in a separate entity, Education Media and Publishing Group International.

He said the restructuring should take place "in the coming weeks."

Speaking to a radio station in Dublin, Ireland, where Education Media has offices, Chairman Barry O'Callaghan on Thursday said equity investors have already seen their holdings tumble in value, and that his own paper losses are in the "hundreds of millions."

He nevertheless said the company would survive.

O'Callaghan is also Houghton Mifflin's chief executive, and a former Credit Suisse Group AG (CSGN.VX) and Morgan Stanley (MS.N) banker. Blumenfeld confirmed O'Callaghan's comments. O'Callaghan was not immediately available for an interview.

On Wednesday, Education Media had said it was in "advanced discussions regarding a comprehensive, consensual balance sheet restructuring."

It said a "substantial majority" of its most important lenders had agreed to a framework for the plan, which may increase working capital by more than $600 million.

Education Media underwent a debt restructuring in August.

In 2006, O'Callaghan's Riverdeep agreed to buy Houghton Mifflin from private equity firms Bain Capital LLC, Blackstone Group LP (BX.N) and Thomas H. Lee Partners LP [THL.UL] for $1.75 billion.

The combined company later bought Reed Elsevier NV's (ELSN.AS) Harcourt education business for roughly $4 billion.

http://www.reuters.com/article/idUSN1 ... 20100114?type=swissMktRpt

Posted on: 2010/1/17 13:41

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