Reed Elsevier posts slight declines in revenue, profit

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London—Reed Elsevier, owner of Variety and Reed Construction Data, reported Thursday that its revenue declined 2% to $4.66 billion in the first half of this year compared with the first half of last year. In the same time frame, Reed Elsevier's adjusted operating profit declined 3% to $1.18 billion.

Reed Elsevier said its underlying revenue, excluding divested properties such as Modern Materials Handling and other controlled-circulation titles from Reed Business Information, increased 1% in the first half of the year.

Reed Elsevier said that it used $121 million in proceeds from "disposals" (part of which was derived from sales of Reed Business Information properties in the first half of the year) to pay down its long-term debt, which has been reduced to $5.76 billion as of June 30, down from $6.35 billion on Dec. 31, 2009.

Reed Elsevier said that it saw stabilization in advertising revenue at Reed Business Information, with online revenue beginning to grow again but print continuing to decline, albeit less intensely. Additionally, Reed Exhibitions saw its revenue increase 8% in the first half of the year to $597 million.

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