Penguin Random House announced “new cross-company senior sales leadership positions” in the US, in order “to enhance and strengthen” the existing sales teams. President and coo Madeline McIntosh emphasized that each of the existing sales teams will “continue as separate and distinct entities” and wrote to employees that the “shared goal will be to grow our sales by developing and executing marketplace strategies in collaboration with our publishing teams that serve our books, the company in totality, and our diverse account base.”
Earlier in the day, PRH UK also announced new sales and digital/consumer insight leadership positions (see below). Spokesperson Stuart Applebaum said the “simultaneous timing…is serendipitous” rather than planned. “Each company organized its new Sales leadership autonomously and had its respective internal operational reasons for posting the news today.”
In the US:
Random House’s Jaci Updike becomes PRH svp, director, adult sales, reporting to McIntosh. Penguin’s sales group leaders will now report to Updike. (Penguin’s longtime president of adult hardcover and children’s sales Dick Heffernan retired at the end of 2013, and was succeeded by John Lawton, who continues to lead the Penguin hardcover sales group.)
Penguin director, adult hardcover field sales Katya Shannon becomes PRH vp, director, special markets, reporting to Updike, overseeing all special markets and gift sales directors and managers.
Penguin Children’s Felicia Frazier becomes PRH svp, director, young readers sales, reporting to McIntosh. All children’s sales will report to Frazier.
Current director of Random Children’s sales and special markets Joan DeMayo will relinquish that position, and will work with McIntosh “on a range of initiatives related to sales and business development” as well as assisting with the transition.
Random’s vp, director, sales strategic planning Julie Black will “now support the entire Penguin Random House Sales group.”
At Penguin Random House UK:
Penguin’s Mike Symons will head the sales teams as group sales director (UK and international). Random House’s Garry Prior will report to Symons, as UK sales director for all of PRH, and Penguin UK sales director Naomi Fidler and Random House UK sales director Ed Christie will both report to Prior.
On the digital sales side, Penguin UK digital sales director Tom Chicken takes that position for the combined group, overseeing all UK ebook sales. Random House’s Nigel Waters will lead ebook negotiations across international markets. Penguin UK digital managing director Anna Rafferty will leave the company after 10 years. Deputy ceo Ian Hudson says, “I’m sorry to have to announce that Anna is leaving. Anna has been the guiding light for Penguin Digital and she justly deserves her high industry profile as a future-thinking digital expert.”
Random House head of operations (UK and overseas) Brian Davies will focus going forward on integrating the UK IT and distribution systems, and developing their publishing businesses in South Africa, continuing to work with the publishing teams in India.
The company also announced a new, merged digital, audio and consumer insight team, led by group director Hannah Telfer (who was RH UK’s director of digital marketing and new product development), reporting to Hudson. She will “lead her team in creating and managing a first class infrastructure of digital tools, marketing data and consumer insight; capturing the benefits of scale and enabling a successful audience development strategy across the company.”
Among other appointments, Random House’s Paul Kelly will be group strategy director for both divisions, and Penguin Children’s creative director Graham Sim will also be brand director groupwide, still reporting to ceo Tom Weldon. Hudson writes: “We now look to Hannah, Graham and Paul to harness all the knowledge and expertise we have across our new business to join up our centers of excellence across digital, brand and strategy. As we transition from a world of browse and display to online search and recommendation, it is more important than ever that we have a clear, planned and deliverable approach to reaching, engaging, retaining and growing all our audiences. “This is our unique opportunity for Penguin Random House UK to come together across our publishing businesses as one company around the consumer. We are in effect creating the blueprint for a publisher as a consumer brand.”
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