Ingram Forms Proprietary Unit
The Ingram Book Group has established a new proprietary and bargain merchandise unit and appointed Tom Jourdane to direct it. Jim Chandler, president of Ingram Book, said Ingram decided to enter the proprietary market because of the growing number of requests from accounts looking for unique product. While Jourdane will acquire remainders to meet the demand, Ingram will custom publish titles if needed, Chandler said. Ingram's publishing efforts will be limited to value products, Chandler said, and content for its custom editions will come from such sources as packagers or co-editions. Before joining Ingram, Jourdane most recently worked at Overstock.com.
Late Success for Nelson
Benefiting from three strong titles released in the fourth quarter—Monster, Captivating and Liberalism Is a Mental Disorder—Thomas Nelson reported that revenue for the fiscal year ended March 31 rose 7%, to $237.8 million, while net income increased 23%, to $19.8 million.
Strong growth in the general domestic marketplace and internationally drove sales for the company. Sales to mainstream bookstores increased 19% in the year, while sales in the international division rose 20%, to more than $10 million. Sales to the Christian bookselling market rose 4%. The weakest performing channel last year was mass merchants, where sales fell 6%.
More Losses at MediaBay
With its audio digital delivery business still in its infancy, MediaBay reported that sales in the first quarter dropped 41%, to $3.4 million, while the net loss increased to $1.6 million from $1.1 million. MediaBay hopes to begin offering digital audio through Microsoft's MSN Music service in the next few months.
Birdsall Wins Delacorte Prize
Young adult novelist Olivia Birdsall was awarded the 23rd annual Delacorte Prize for a first young adult novel at the Random House offices last week. Her novel, Notes on a Near-Life Experience, will be published in 2007.
Grabois to Exit Bowker
As part of a reorganization of Bowker's editorial department, the company has eliminated four general manager spots. Among those leaving the company is Andrew Grabois, v-p of publisher relations and content development, whose last day will be May 27. Bowker president Michael Cairns said he is in the process of forming new editorial teams that will focus on different publishing segments, among them trade, education and professional.
Gains at Franklin
Revenue at Franklin Eletronic Publishers inched up by less than 1% for the fiscal year ended March 31, to $62.1 million. Net income increased 45.4%, to $2.4 million. The company's bottom line was affected by two notable events: the sale of its 25% stake in the French software developer Mobipocket.com, which netted Franklin $1.8 million, and a $1.5 million charge related to writing down the value of its Rolodex licensing agreement.
St. Lifer to Scholastic
Evan St. Lifer, editor-in-chief of School Library Journal since 2001, will leave that position June 2 to become v-p and general manager of Scholastic Library Publishing. In his new role, St. Lifer will oversee the editorial, marketing and sales efforts for Scholastic's library publishing businesses and will report to Greg Worrell, president of SLP. Before being named editor of SLJ, St. Lifer spent 10 years as an editor at Library Journal.
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