U.K.-based Bonnier Publishing has announced the launch of a U.S. children’s imprint, little bee books, which will be headquartered in New York City. little bee, which will be distributed in the U.S. and Canada by Simon & Schuster, is targeting readers 0-12 years old, with early learning concept books, board books, novelty books, activity books, picture books, nonfiction titles, and licensed products. little bee will release 50 titles in spring 2015, and according to little bee president Shimul Tolia, there will be 150 titles in print by the end of 2015.
“This is something we have been planning for some time,” Bonnier Publishing CEO Richard Johnson stated in a release. “It is a major part of our international expansion strategy.”
According to the company, the imprint was named little bee because it “symbolizes the playful busyness and insatiable curiosity of children, who tirelessly buzz from one activity to the next.”
Tolia, who previously served as editorial director at Sandy Creek, a division of Sterling Publishing, told PW that she and her colleagues are currently putting together an editorial, marketing, and production team. little bee’s executive team includes editorial director Sonali Fry, who worked at S&S for more than a decade and was most recently editor-in-chief for Little Simon; finance and operations director Thomas Morgan, who previously worked at Sterling Publishing; and sales and marketing director Sarah Rucker, who was senior sales director at Penguin Random House and before that sales director at Hyperion Books.
little bee currently is housed in temporary offices in the NoMad area, while negotiations for permanent office space in Union Square are finalized. During BEA this week, company executives may be found in S&S’s meeting room, #MR202, Level 3, Hall A.
Bonnier Publishing is the primary English-language arm of Bonnier Books, which is part of Sweden’s Bonnier Group, consisting of 175 companies operating in 20 countries. Besides Bonnier Publishing’s U.K. headquarters, it has offices in Australia and France. Bonnier Publishing owns children’s publishers Hot Key Books, Templar Publishing, Autumn Publishing, the Five Mile Press, Weldon Owen Publishing UK, Red Lemon Press, and Piccolia (France).