RCS MediaGroup is an international multimedia group that produces daily newspapers, magazines, books, radio broadcasting, new media, digital and satellite TV. Forty percent of sales are generated outside Italy, with a significant presence in Spain, Portugal, France, the US, and China. RCS MediaGroup S.p.A. is listed on the Blue Chip segment of the Italian Stock Exchange.

The group’s book publisher is RCS Libri, with imprints including Rizzoli, Bompiani, BUR, Sonzogno, Fabbri, Adelphi, Marsilio, Lizard and RL. The company publishes economy-priced books in a joint venture with the Mauri Spagnol Group, and partners with Log607 for app development and Mach 2 in retail and e-book distribution.

The company is also active in educational and professional publishing with Fabbri, ETAS, Nuova Italia, Sansoni, Bompiani, Tramontana, Oxford, Hachette, Edinumen, Calderini, Edagricole and Markes, legal publishing with La Tribuna, and reference with Sansoni. Fabbri also distributes anthologies in the Italian market and worldwide.

RCS Libri is present in the United States with Rizzoli International Publications and in Spain and Portugal with La Esfera de los Libros and A Esfera dos Livros.

With a market share of 11%, RCS Libri is the second largest group in Italy.

Analysis & Key Developments


Revenue from the Books segment declined by 1.8% compared to 2012, from 273 million EUR to 252 million EUR in 2013, as a result of revenue contraction from distribution deals with other publishers (-9%) and a decline in Education (-2.9%). The decline was partly offset by higher revenue from in-house products (2.9%) and digital growth (77%). Revenue from Partworks and Skira were excluded from the totals.

Ownership, Mergers & Acquisition, Internal Organization

Fabbri’s Partworks Division was sold in August 2013, along with equity from Editions d’Art Albert Skira in December.


Italy contributes 905 million EUR (69%) of the company’s revenue, while 29% comes from Spain and 2% from other countries.


In 2013, RCS Libro noted strong growth in e-book revenue (80% compared to 2012) with the value of goods sold already accounting for 4% of the combined physical and e-book revenue.

Bestselling Authors & Titles

Among the bestselling titles of 2013 are Joël Dicker’sh The Truth About the Harry Quebert Affair (Bompiani), and Irene Cao, whose erotic trilogy Lo ti guardo; Io ti sento; Io ti voglio was published by Rizzoli and sold in eleven countries.

Earlier Developments


The decline in revenues from 298.6 million EUR in 2011 to 273.3 million EUR is based mainly on the separation of Flammarion from RCS Libri. While Education and Rizzoli International reported constant revenues, the Trade division closed with a loss of 11.4 million EUR, down to 133 million EUR.

RCS Libri sold Flammarion to Madrigall, parent company of publishing house Gallimard, for 239 million EUR with an immediate payment of 184.2 million EUR and debt reimbursement. Flammarion's group revenues for the year ending June 30, 2012 were 99 million EUR, with EBITDA of 6.6 million EUR.

Ownership, Mergers & Acquisition, Internal Organization

The sale of Flammarion was completed on September 5th, 2012. In full year 2011 the French Group reported revenue of EUR 215 million EUR and an EBITDA of 25 million EUR.

In consideration of the ongoing uncertainty in the market, the Group implemented a new cost-containment initiative in Spain and Italy, which achieved benefits of 71 million EUR (of the 70 million announced) in 2012.


By geography, Italy covers 1.09 billion EUR (68%), Spain 429 million EUR (27%), France 8.2 million EUR (1%) and other countries 76 million EUR (5%) of group revenues.


RCS Libri launched a service in early 2013 in association with the Italian train company NTV to give train passengers free e-book access in order to study the way consumers read and discover digital content.

During 2012, RCS Libri launched Rizzoli First, a digital-first list that publishes Italian and English versions of novels ahead of any print version. According to a company statement, Rizzoli was the first large publishing group in the Italian market to offer a digital-first imprint and the first worldwide to publish in dual languages.

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