Fourteen months after the completion of the Random House–Penguin Group merger, PRH CEO Markus Dohle has created the Penguin Publishing Group, which puts all Penguin adult imprints under Madeline McIntosh, who was named president of the new unit. The move is Dohle’s most aggressive yet in streamlining the united company’s editorial operations. Previously, Penguin’s adult imprints operated under the Penguin Adult and Berkley/NAL groups. The selection of McIntosh, who had been PRH’s COO and president of U.S. operations, means that publishing veteran Susan Petersen Kennedy, president of Penguin Group USA since 2001, will leave the company at the end of 2014.

Dohle’s initial efforts to make the editorial units of PRH more efficient were less dramatic than his move in 2008 to streamline Random House’s editorial operations, when five publishing groups were consolidated into three—the Random House Publishing Group, the Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group, and the Crown Publishing Group—resulting in the departure of high-profile publishers Irwyn Applebaum and Steve Rubin.

The news about Kennedy was not a big surprise to industry observers, many of whom wondered how she would fit into a crowded top layer of editorial management. In his letter announcing Kennedy’s pending departure, Dohle was effusive in his praise for her career and contributions to Penguin and PRH. He noted that her legacy will be “rich, diverse, and long lasting.” Indeed, in addition to the Riverhead Books imprint (which Kennedy founded), Penguin started the Penguin Press, Portfolio, Sentinel, and Blue Rider Press imprints under Kennedy’s watch, and she was involved in hiring dozens of the house’s top publishers and editors. David Shanks, former Penguin CEO and now senior executive advisor at PRH, said, “Kennedy is a great talent and is responsible for making Penguin the amazing company that it is. She hired brilliantly and passed on 40 years of knowledge to her publishers.”

Kennedy is the most recent of several high-ranking Penguin executives to leave PRH. Before the start of the year, Dick Heffernan retired as president of adult hardcover and children’s sales, and Doug Whiteman, executive v-p, operations, left to join Acelero Learning. Perhaps with that history in mind, Dohle noted, in one of his letters to employees about the changes, that the formation of the Penguin Adult group does not involve the Penguin Young Readers Group, and that its president, Don Weisberg, will continue to report to him.

In explaining his reasoning for creating the Penguin Publishing Group, Dohle wrote that, as the book market continues to evolve and e-book sales grow, “it is clear that capitalizing on our authors’ opportunities for growth will require even greater collaboration and coordination, and even more unified publishing strategies across all formats.” He stressed, however, that while McIntosh’s appointment was a significant change for Penguin, “there is no change being contemplated for the creative and entrepreneurial direction of Penguin’s individual publishing imprints.”

The move of McIntosh from COO to publisher led to the promotion of Nihar Malaviya and Jaci Updike to new roles with added responsibilities. Malaviya is now executive v-p and COO, PRH U.S., and Updike is president of sales, PRH U.S. Malaviya’s chief priorities, Dohle said, “will be to lead us through the ongoing systems and supply-chain integration, and to ensure that we respond even more rapidly and effectively to the digital transformation of our business.”

Updike’s appointment—from senior v-p, director, adult sales—puts her in charge of all of PRH’s sales operations, with Felicia Frazier, senior v-p, director, PRH Young Readers Sales, and Cyrus Kheradi, senior v-p, director, PRH International Sales and Marketing and director, East Asia Business Development, now reporting to Updike.

Penguin Publishing Group

(Madeline McIntosh, president)

Berkley and New American Library Publishing Group
Leslie Gelbman, president
InkLit Berkley Sensation
InterMix Berkley-Caliber
Berkley Berkley Prime Crime
Berkley Books Ace
Berkley Heat Jove
New American Library
Kara Welsh, senior v-p
NAL Obsidian Mysteries
NAL Accent Signet
NAL Caliber Signet Classics
ROC Signet Eclipse
Celebra Signet Select
Penguin Books
Kathryn Court, president & publisher
Penguin Books Penguin Classics
John Duff, v-p & publisher
Perigee HP Books
Prentice Hall
Viking, Plume
Clare Ferraro, president
Viking Plume
Pamela Dorman Books Hudson Street Press
Joel Fotinos, v-p & publisher
Penguin Press
Ann Godoff, president & editor-in-chief
Penguin Press
GP Putnam’s Sons
Ivan Held, president
GP Putnam’s Sons Pintail
Marian Wood Books
Riverhead Books
Geoff Kloske, v-p & publisher
Riverhead Books Riverhead Trade Paperbacks
Blue Rider Press
David Rosenthal, president & publisher
Blue Rider Press
Dutton, Gotham, Avery
Brian Tart, president & publisher
Dutton Avery
Gotham Viking Studio
Portfolio, Sentinel
Adrian Zackheim, president & publisher
Portfolio Current