© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: The Thomson Reuters logo is seen on the company building in Times Square, New York, U.S., January 30, 2018. REUTERS/Andrew Kelly/File PhotoBy Helen Coster and Kenneth Li(Reuters) -Thomson Reuters Corp on Tuesday reported higher sales and operating profit in the first quarter, helped by divestitures and high customer retention rates.The news and information company reported adjusted earnings of 82 cents per share. It was not immediately clear if that compared directly to analyst forecasts for 80 cents.Total revenue rose 4% in the quarter to $1.738 billion, beating expectations, according to estimates from Refinitiv.Thomson Reuters (NYSE:TRI), which owns the Westlaw legal database, Reuters news agency and the Checkpoint tax and accounting service, said organic revenue was up 7% for its “Big 3” segments: Legal Professionals, Corporates and Tax & Accounting Professionals.”While we acknowledge elevated macroeconomic uncertainty, our underlying business is resilient, and we are largely maintaining our 2023 outlook,” Chief Executive Office Steve Hasker said in a statement. “We are also excited about recent developments in AI, which we believe will provide plentiful opportunities to better serve our customers as we continue to invest in their future.”Thomson Reuters said it is reaffirming full year 2023 financial forecasts, but trimmed its 2023 total revenue growth forecast to 3% to 3.5%, from 4.5% to 5%, from the sale of a majority take in legal business management software company Elite to TPG. The company said it sold 24.5 million shares of London Stock Exchange Group (LON:LSEG) in the first quarter for gross proceeds of $2.3 billion.As of April 30, Thomson Reuters owned 47.4 million shares of LSEG, worth $5 billion.Thomson Reuters said it had “increasing confidence” about its outlook but noted there were “many signs that point to a weakening global economic environment” from high interest rates and geopolitical risk.In April, the company said it would return $2.2 billion to shareholders through a cash distribution and a reverse stock split after selling some of its LSEG shares. Shareholders will vote on the distribution and reverse stock split on June 14, the company said. The proposal requires approval from at least two-thirds of the votes cast.Also in April, private equity firm TPG Inc said it had agreed to buy a majority stake in Elite, a vendor of business management software for law firms, from Thomson Reuters at a valuation of $500 million.Thomson Reuters shares are trading at an all-time high.

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