People, Etc.

Tom Thompson has joined SMP as vp, creative services and advertising. Thompson most recently was svp, digital strategy/group director of Verso Advertising, where he worked for 10 years.

At William Morrow, Emily Krump has been promoted to senior editor.

Bookselling
Barnes & Noble will close their downtown Minneapolis store at Nicollet Mall in May when the lease expires. The company admitted that the two-floor, 25,000-square-foot store is too big and unsuccessfully tried to negotiate with the landlord for a 14,000 to 16,000-square foot space on one floor. It's yet another sign that the bookseller is looking to reshape its store portfolio towards smaller spaces.

In November, vp of development David Deason had said he "expects that as many as 100 of the 638 locations could be relocated or revamped to accommodate the smaller footprint with a larger food and beverage section." One new concept store planned for Plano, TX will be just 9,000 square feet in size, with Deason having said, "We are excited to be opening a smaller format store, as part of a number of different concept stores that we're testing nationwide."

Corporate
News organizations out of Singapore are reporting a deal in the works for Penguin Random House to sell the Penguin Singapore and Penguin Malaysia distribution units to Times Publishing, a subsidiary of Fraser and Neave, for approximately $5.5 million. Reportedly, the units would continue to serve as exclusive distributors for PRH in Singapore, Malaysia and Brunei.

PRH says it "has signed a conditional agreement with Times Publishing Limited, which is the first step towards a sale of Penguin Singapore and Malaysia to the company." They add, "Completion of the transaction will be subject to certain conditions being met. There will be no further comment until the deal is successfully completed."
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