Round up #123: AZ 3Q earnings, Random Penguin

Round up #123: AZ 3Q earnings, Random Penguin

The ILMK Round ups are short pieces which may or may not be expanded later.

Random Penguin?

Just in terms of marketing, I love the idea of a merger between Random House and Penguin. I can only imagine them calling it “Random Penguin”. Here’s the advertising campaign: you have a very serious event going on, maybe a well-known one of historical significance. Then, out of nowhere, a penguin drops from the sky into the scene. Voiceover: “Random Penguin”. Okay, maybe that’s just me. 🙂 Oh, and they could sponsor every showing ever of The Terror of Tiny Town (available through Prime Instant Streaming), an all little people singing Western that, for no explicable reason, has a live penguin in a scene in a barber shop.

But I digress. 😉

There appear to be serious discussions going on that could result in a merger of Random House and Penguin:


While at first glance, that may seem like an American publishing giant joining forces with a UK publishing house, it’s not that simple. Random House (which started in the USA in 1925) has been owned by a German company for more than a decade.  I don’t think this would be so much about geographical territory expansion, but just flat out size.

I don’t think of them as philosophically identical by any means, and the merger would not be easy in the boardroom, in my opinion.

Still, I could see this happening.

Amazon’s third quarter report…still selling more, making less

It always makes me smile when someone on an online forum says Amazon is just out to make a profit.

Obviously, that person hasn’t invested in Amazon. 😉

The company has never been about making a profit…sales, yes, but Amazon seems to always be investing in a future (which traditional investors might argue never actually arrives).

In this

press release

Amazon reports its third quarter 2012 financials.

Net sales were up 27% over the same time last year…and there was a net loss of $274 million dollars (compared to a net gain of $63 million in last year’s 3rd quarter).

Amazon missed expectations…and the stock immediately dropped. However, it is already back up:

There’s a simple solution to Amazon missing expectations…don’t expect so much. 😉

New York Times article

This paragraph from Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos was interesting:

“Our approach is to work hard to charge less. Sell devices near break even and you can pack a lot of sophisticated hardware into a very low price point,” said Jeff Bezos, founder and CEO of “And our approach is working – the $199 Kindle Fire HD is the #1 bestselling product across Amazon worldwide. Incredibly, this is true even as measured by unit sales. The next two bestselling products worldwide are our Kindle Paperwhite and our $69 Kindle. We’re selling more of each of these devices than the #4 bestselling product, book three of the Fifty Shades of Grey series. And we haven’t even started shipping our best tablet – the $299 Kindle Fire HD 8.9” ships November 20.”

So, the Kindle Fire without 4G is better than the one with it? Hmm…

It’s worth noting that Apple also disappointed some folks.

What do you think? Would a Random House/Penguin merger be a good or bad thing? Will Amazon ever reach a more stable point where they can reap the benefits of their investments, or will they always have to spend so much on research & development and infrastructure that they never catch up? Feel free to let me and my readers know by commenting on this post.

This post by Bufo Calvin originally appeared in the I Love My Kindle blog.

3 Responses to “Round up #123: AZ 3Q earnings, Random Penguin”

  1. Lady Galaxy Says:

    I saw an article today in the NY Times that News Corp might get into a bidding war for Penguin.

    I’d much rather have a Random Penguin than a Fox in the Penguin House.

  2. It’s official: Penguin/Random House merger announced « I Love My Kindle Says:

    […] I recently wrote about the possibility of Random House and Penguin, two of the world’s largest trade publishers, merging […]

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