"Fifty Shades of Grey" boosts Random House sales

"Fifty Shades of Grey"
The Writer's Coffee Shop

FRANKFURT, Germany Random House publishing company has booked a record year thanks to sales of the "Fifty Shades of Grey" erotic romance trilogy.

Revenues at the New York based publisher jumped 22.5 percent to 2.1 billion euro ($2.7 billion) in 2012. The company sold 70 million copies of "Fifty Shades" in print, audio and e-books in English, German and Spanish.

Random House operating earnings leaped 76 percent to 325 million euro.

Earnings at German parent company Bertelsmann edged up to 619 million euro for 2012 from 612 million euro the year before. Higher expenses for taxes and what it called "structurally declining" businesses hurt profits.

Privately held Bertelsmann includes broadcaster RTL, magazine publisher Gruner + Jahr and music rights business BMG.

Random House is merging with Pearson's Penguin book publisher.