Thomson Reuters revenue rises, plans divestitures

Reuters

NEW YORK (Reuters) - News and information provider Thomson Reuters Corp's revenue growth accelerated in the first quarter as it reaped the benefits of heavy spending on new products, and the company said it plans to sell two more businesses to fund further investment.

The company said on Thursday it expects to raise about $1 billion from the sale of its enterprise risk management and investment accounting software businesses, along with previously announced sales of its BARBRI legal courses product and Scandinavian legal and tax and accounting units.

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Chief Executive Thomas Glocer said the funds would be reinvested in the core business.

First-quarter revenue from ongoing businesses was $3.2 billion, up 5 percent before currency adjustments, quickening from 4 percent growth in the preceding quarter.

"Based on our good start to the year, we are confident that we will deliver on our expectations for the full year," Glocer said in a statement accompanying the results.

Thomson Reuters, which provides news and information to financial, legal, accounting and healthcare professionals, reaffirmed its 2011 forecast for mid-single digit revenue growth. It also reiterated that the operating profit margin is expected to increase by at least 100 basis points this year.

First-quarter underlying profit increased 1 percent, with a corresponding margin of 17.2 percent. Excluding a $39 million one-time charge, the underlying profit margin was 18.4 percent compared with 18 percent in the same period of 2010.

Adjusted earnings per share, including the one-time charge, rose to 39 cents from 36 cents in the same quarter last year.

(Reporting by Jennifer Saba; Editing by Ted Kerr)