Harlequin Sale To HarperCollins Closes
On Aug. 1, NewsCorp, HarperCollins’s parent company, completed its acquisition of Harlequin Enterprises for C$455 million in cash from Torstar Corp. Harlequin, best known as a publisher of women’s fiction, will now operate as a division of HarperCollins. Harlequin CEO and publisher Craig Swinwood will continue to oversee its operations. He will report to HarperCollins CEO Brian Murray. Harlequin will be a standalone subsidiary of HarperCollins and will maintain its headquarters and offices in Toronto.
Hachette Purchase of Perseus Delayed
The Hachette Book Group/Ingram purchase of the Perseus Books Group will not be completed by July 31 as originally planned. The new target closing date is Aug. 31.
Apple Settlement Won’t Be Modified
At a July 24 teleconference, Judge Denise Cote expressed concerns with a proposed deal to settle damage claims in Apple’s e-book price-fixing case. But in a letter filed July 30 with the court, the parties indicated that they would not modify the agreement for which they are now seeking preliminary approval.
Amazon Claims $9.99 E-books Create “Bigger Pie”
In a post on its Kindle forum, Amazon cited the need for lower e-book prices as a “key objective” in its ongoing dispute with Hachette over e-book terms. Amazon called e-book prices of $14.99 or more “unjustifiably high,” and complained that higher prices suppress e-book sales.
Macmillan Expands Library E-book Lending
Macmillan announced that it will make its full catalogue of frontlist e-book titles available to libraries via its public library e-lending pilot. Alison Lazarus, Macmillan president of sales, said that after a year of experience with its current pilot, the company now has “a better sense of the market.”
Amazon, Alloy Team for Digital Imprint
Amazon Publishing and Alloy Entertainment have partnered on a new digital-first imprint, also called Alloy Entertainment. The unit will focus on young adult, new adult, and commercial fiction, which are Alloy’s specialty areas in its book packaging business.
In our July 28 story “What Is Ahead for Distribution,” we incorrectly characterized Macmillan’s position on distribution. The company has eight distribution clients and is looking for others that complement its publishing program.