In October, a US federal judge ruled for the government in an antitrust suit to block a $2 billion deal for Penguin Random House to acquire Big Five rival Simon & Schuster. In the months since then, PRH’s US-based executive team has lost key members. This week, the world’s largest English-language general trade book publisher unveiled a new leadership structure.
“Penguin Random House Global CEO Markus Dohle and U.S. CEO Madeline McIntosh earlier stepped down from their posts, and now we have learned that McIntosh’s post will be eliminated in a corporate reorganization of PRH’s U.S. division,” reports Andrew Albanese, Publishers Weekly senior writer.
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According to PW, Random House Publishing Group (RHPG) will split into two groups, recreating the Crown Publishing Group (CPG)—albeit with some significant differences from its prior iteration, which was folded into the RH group in 2017.
Sanyu Dillon, previously chief marketing officer for Penguin Random House, becomes president of RH group, and David Drake has been promoted to president of Crown group. Both will report to Nihar Malaviya—interim global CEO of PRH.
“PRH officials say the addition of a new adult publishing group is intended to revive competition among its imprints and to provide more ‘touchpoints’ for agents to meet PRH editors,” Albanese tells me.
“That’s a shrewd move because PRH throws another hat in the ring when it comes to acquiring big books. This new corporate structure will certainly incentivize PRH to compete harder. In my opinion, it’s a very smart move to give the company a new future to pursue in the wake of having its S&S vision blown up by the courts.”