Suchomel Leaves IPG

Mark Suchomel, who has been president of Independent Publishers Group, the Chicago distribution company, since 1998, abruptly left the firm last week. Suchomel, who has been with IPG a total of 27 years, has led the company through a number of expansions, such as the acquisition of Trafalgar Square Publishing, and steady growth. No replacement has been announced.

Wiley Looks to Cut $80M

In reporting third-quarter results for the period ended January 31, John Wiley & Sons announced further plans to change its operations and cut costs to accommodate the transition from print to digital. CEO Steve Smith explained that “due to the market transition away from print to digital and the economic realities facing some of our markets, we have initiated a company-wide restructuring effort that will result in approximately $80 million of run-rate savings going into fiscal year 2015.”

Sales, Earnings Fall at Harlequin

Slowing growth in digital sales contributed to a 7.2% decline in sales at Harlequin in 2012, to C$426.5 million, while operating earnings fell 11.6%, to C$72.8 million, parent company Torstar reported. As digital growth slowed, Torstar said that declines in print sales also began to slow in the second quarter of the year in North America, a “trend that continued for the balance of the year.” At the close of 2012, global digital revenue represented 20.7% of sales (C$88 million), compared to 15.5% (C$71 million) in 2011.

Hyperion to Divest Backlist

Hyperion is looking to sell some of its backlist titles that do not fit with its new strategy, which is focused on synergy. With this decision, books that cannot be linked to parent company Walt Disney (and its other media properties) will be sold. The plan does not affect the Disney children’s publishing group.

Lagardere’s Profits Up

Earnings before interest and taxes rose slightly in 2012 at Lagardere Publishing, from €221 million to €223 million, according to parent company Lagardere. Earlier this year, the firm reported that revenue increased 1.9%, to €2.08 billion. Profits at Lagardere’s U.S. subsidiary, Hachette Book Group, fell in the year, due to what the company said was lower sales and the impact of e-book price-fixing settlements. In February, HBG reported that sales fell 3.4% last year due in part to higher sales of lower-priced e-books.

Cavendish Square buys Marshall Cavendish Titles

Cavendish Square, a new educational publishing company founded by Roger Rosen, has signed a deal to acquire the assets of Marshall Cavendish’s North American library operation, including the Benchmark, Bookworm, MC Reference, and MC Digital lists. In all, the Marshall Cavendish library lists are composed of over 3,000 print and digital works.

Publishers Oppose Amazon Bid for ‘.book’ Domain

In a filing with ICANN (Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers) the Association of American Publishers came out against a bid by Amazon to buy the .book domain name for its exclusive use, saying such an application would be counter to public interest.