Good Year So Far for Reed

HIL ANDERSON, SENIOR EDITOR
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London, England – A solid first-half showing by Reed Exhibitions helped keep parent company Reed Elsevier on track to meet its 2008 financial goals, the company announced at the midpoint of the year.

Reed Elsevier said its continuing operations, which include Reed Exhibitions, had grown 5% in the first half of the year to £1.97 billion (about $3.7 billion). Operating profit, adjusted for amortization, restructuring and integration costs, climbed 12% to £577 million. “I am confident we will deliver on our goals,” said Reed Elsevier CEO Sir Crispin Davis.

While online information and workflow products were also major contributors to the results, the exhibitions division received glowing praise from Davis in his presentation on July 31.

Reed Exhibitions posted first-half revenues of £377 million pounds ($702.8 million), up 9% from the £315 million ($587.2 million) in the first half of 2007. The adjusted operating profit of £100 million ($186.4 million) for the first half of 2008 was 16% over the same period last year.

The company said that while the SIMA residential property show in Madrid was hit hard by the downturn in the Spanish real estate market, strong growth was reported across the board. Particularly robust this year were the PGA Merchandise ShowJCK Jewelry Show and ISC West Show in the U.S., along with M-Tech in Japan and Interclima Interconfort in Paris.

“We’re seeing very high ROI from our customers coming from these face-to-face meetings,” Davis said.

Reed Exhibitions launched 11 events in the first half of 2008 and acquired six. The company now brings in 20% of its exhibitions business from so-called emerging markets. Much of the exhibition growth was in booming sectors such as alternative-energy and “green” technology, aerospace and medical devices.

“Having the leadership show in each of these sectors remains crucial,” Davis said. “Over the last six months, most of our leadership shows have done very well with good demand and good customer feedback.”

Reed Exhibitions annually organizes more than 500 events in 38 countries that draw more than 6 million total attendees.

Reach Mike Rusbridge, Chairman & CEO of Reed Exhibitions at +44 (0) 208 910 7901 or mike.rusbridge@reedexpo.co.uk