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Finalized Penguin Random House merger 'unites world's leading publishers' Print Email
Written by Eric Tiansay   
Monday, 01 July 2013 09:00 AM America/New_York

Bertelsmann and Pearson have finalized the merger of Random House and Penguin Group, their respective book publishing companies.

Last October, the publishers announced their plan to unite the two houses. Joining Penguin and Random House was thought to help the merged company gain more traction in the digital book market.

Under terms of the deal, Bertelsmann owns 53% and Pearson 47% of the new Penguin Random House (PRH) company, which will control more than 30% of all trade book publishing. The WaterBrook Multnomah Publishing Group is part of Random House.

The world headquarters of PRH will be in New York City. The new company will employ more than 10,000 people worldwide and publish 15,000-plus titles annually across 250 imprints, while generating annual revenues of approximately $3.9 billion, PRH officials said.

Markus Dohle, previously chairman and CEO of Random House since June 2008, will serve as CEO of PRH. John Makinson, who has headed the Penguin Group since 2002, will serve as the company's chairman of the board.

"We are uniting two of the world's leading book publishers, with complementary skills and strengths, both with outstanding creative and commercial track records, with a passion for publishing the best book ... in the best interests of the readers—who will benefit from the quality and enormous variety of books we will publish," Dohle said.

Bertelsmann Chairman and CEO Thomas Rabe added: "Bertelsmann and Pearson have set a great course for the future of the book and book publishing—and new growth for Bertelsmann. Together, we can and will invest on a much larger scale than separately in diverse content, author development and support, the publishing talent, the entire spectrum of physical and digital book acquisitions, production, marketing and distribution, and also in fast-growing markets of the future.

"We are strengthening one of our core businesses by pooling resources, pursuing joint expansion and a greater reach," Rabe continued. "We are accelerating the transformation to digital and leveraging the entire range of possibilities it offers. We also are promoting regional growth, especially in the emerging markets of China, India and Brazil."

PRH will be comprised of all of Random House and Penguin Group's publishing divisions and imprints in the U.S., Canada, U.K., Australia, New Zealand and India, as well as Random House's publishers in Spain and Latin America, and Penguin's trade publishing activity in Asia and South Africa.