Hachette UK has reorganized its sales force into two groups due to "substantial changes to our markets." The first group comprises Little Brown UK and Orion; the second comprises Hodder & Stoughton, Headline, Hachette Children's Books and Quercus. As a result of the changes, sales director at Orion Dallas Manderson is leaving "to pursue other interests" while executive director sales and marketing at Quercus Jane Harris is also exiting in July. Hachette said the restructure means a "small number of roles in sales are now at risk of redundancy."
The Little Brown UK and Orion team will be overseen by Rob Manser, currently sales, marketing and publicity director of Little Brown. Orion sales director Jo Carpenter will report to Manser, as will the yet-to-be-appointed positions of Little Brown sales director, head of export sales, and head of digital/online sales. Little Brown's marketing and publicity teams will also continue to report to Manser, while Orion's marketing team will continue to report to Mark Rusher.
The Hodder & Stoughton, Headline, Hachette Children's Books and Quercus team will be headed by Lucy Hale, currently consumer director of Hodder & Stoughton and John Murray Press, with each imprint to keep or appoint a separate sales director and sales staff. Separately, international sales will be brought together under one international sales director, yet to be appointed but who will report to Hachette UK commercial director Richard Kitson. The company added that Manser and Hale will "work together to determine the right structure for field sales," with any changes to be announced later this year.
"We are enormously proud of our sales teams, of their passion for the books they sell and of their knowledge and understanding of their customers," Hachette UK said in the announcement. "This reorganization ensures that all those qualities are maintained and that each company, the imprints within it and therefore every book we publish, will continue to have individual focus but, by coming together in this way to better reflect our markets, we can be more effective."
Of Manderson's departure Orion Publishing Group ceo David Young said in a statement: "There will be other opportunities to pay proper and fitting tribute to Dallas for his enormous contribution to Orion so for now I simply want to salute him as a brilliant sales director and a wonderful colleague. Everyone at Orion will miss him very much indeed."
Of Harris's exit, Jamie Hodder-Williams said: "Jane is admired enormously throughout the trade and in the very short time that we have worked together – since Hodder & Stoughton acquired Quercus – my admiration for her professionalism and her understanding of publishing and bookselling has deepened."
Separately, Bertelsmann announced they will exit the book club business in Germany, Switzerland, and Australia at the end of 2015. " The decision to close our German-language club and direct marketing business wasn't an easy one,” Fernando Carro, head of Bertelsmann's club operations, said in the announcement. "But despite intense attempts to further develop the business, the club's business model is no longer economically viable in the German market." Bertelsmann will also close the remaining 50 book club stores, but will keep book clubs operational in Russia and Ukraine as well as Spain, in which the company has a 50 percent stake.