Guideposts has acquired Williamson Publishing of Charlotte, Vt., and will merge it with its Ideals Publications subsidiary based in Nashville. Williamson primarily publishes educational activity paperbacks for children aged 3 to 13. The company has a backlist of approximately 150 titles, and among the series it produces are the Lewis & Clark Expedition, Monarch Magic and SuperScience Concoctions.
Marty Flanagan, director of Ideals, said the addition of the Williamson titles gives Ideals a greater presence in the educational retail market, an area that parent company Guideposts is looking to expand. The purchase "is the beginning of a bigger foothold in education," Flanagan said. He estimated the Williamson titles will add between $2 million and $3 million to sales this year, giving Ideals' retail operation about $12 million in revenue.
Susan Williamson will remain editorial director for Williamson, which will publish eight titles annually as an Ideals imprint under the Williamson Books banner. She will report from Vermont to Pat Pingry, v-p, publisher and editorial director of Ideals. Jack Williamson will serve as a sales and marketing consultant to Ideals, but the remainder of Williamson's 10-person staff has been let go. Flanagan said he expects Ideals to release a total of 70 new titles this year with 60% directed to the children's market and 40% aimed at adults.