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Saturday, July 16, 2005

Harry Potter fans mob bookstores


"NEW YORK (MarketWatch) - Harry Potter fans swarmed book stores around the country over the weekend as Scholastic Corp., set plans to release a sales report on the book as early as Sunday.

Kyle Good, spokeswoman for Scholastic Corp, said some 6,000 Harry Potter fans lined up around the block at the company's book store in New York City late Friday, as "Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince" went on sale.

Scholastic (SCHL: news, chart, profile) turned Mercer Street outside the store into "Harry Potter Place" with costumes and other regalia to mark what the company billed as the biggest book launch in history, with nearly two million pre-orders for the sixth book in the series.

In an interview with MaketWatch.com, Scholastic CEO Dick Robinson said the company expects revenue and profit from the new book to come in close to the previous title, "Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix." See interview with Scholastic CEO.

Scholastic is printing an initial unprecedented 10.8 million copies of Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince, an all-time United States publishing record.

The fastest-selling book in history, "Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix," was released on June 21, 2003 and sold 5 million copies in the first 24 hours." (more at link)

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