Gruppo editoriale Mauri Spagnol (GeMS) is a privately held publishing group and the second-largest publisher in Italy. It controls nine publishing houses: Bollati Boringhieri, La Coccinella, Garzanti (an imprint of Corbaccio), Guanda, Longanesi, Nord, Salani (imprints Ape Junior, Magazzini Salani, Nord-Sud and Ponte alle Grazie), TEA (imprints Lìmina, RL Libri and Tre60), and Vallardi. GeMS launched Duomo Ediciones in Barcelona in 2008. The company is also the main shareholder of Chiarelettere, which specializes in current affairs, and holds a 33% share in Edigita, a leader in e-book distribution in Italy.

GeMS's largest sharehold is Messaggerie Italiane, Italy’s leading book and periodical distribution group. Messaggerie Italiane was founded in 1914 and currently serves 700 publishers and 4,000 points of sale.

GeMS claims to have 12 million books and e-books directly, along with another 6 million copies under licensing agreements.

The current form of GeMS was established in October 2005, following an agreement between the Mauri and Spagnol families. The mission of Gruppo editoriale Mauri Spagnol is to "enable the individual publishing houses to invest in joint projects, create stronger product lines and enhance the visibility of the group’s authors, as well as to both streamline and develop synergies in their central functions, while leaving each one of them complete editorial freedom."

Analysis & Key Developments


The financial information provided by Gruppo Messaggerie is limited to revenues from publishing and wholesale book distribution.

In 2015, GeMS resumed its positive development as the publishing arm of Gruppo Messaggerie, with the best results in four years and an 11% growth in market share.

After a period of rapid growth up to 2010, the group confronted an overall shrinking book market and the general economic crisis in Italy. GeMS continued to invest in the digital division where it claims an 18% share of the e-book market.

Internal Organization

The Gruppo Messaggerie, acting as a holding structure, oversees book and magazine publishing and distribution and e-commerce. According to president Achille Mauri, the company claims 36% percent of the Italian book trade. (The periodicals division is not included in the revenues accounted for in this ranking.) After merging with its former competitor PDE, GeMS now counts Feltrinelli, Laterza, Sellerio, Il Mulino, and Il Castoro among its main imprints. The group’s company Opportunity is also a leader in book distribution in Italian supermarkets.

Stefano Mauri, former president and CEO of GeMS, was appointed Vice-President of Gruppo Messaggerie to oversee strategic developments in January 2013.

Alberto Ottieri, head of the distribution arm, was nominated CEO as of June 2014.

In 2014, the Mauri foundation was created to celebrate 100 years of Messaggerie Italiane: the Foundation is now in charge of the Scuola per Librai Umberto e Elisabetta Mauri (Umberto and Elisabetta Mauri Booksellers’ School) in Venice.

Digital and E-commerce

The Group controls IBS, the leading Italian online bookstore, with approximately 100 million EUR in revenue, as well as eDigita, Italy’s leading distributor for e-books.

In 2014 Messaggerie signed an agreement with Deutsche Telekom for the launch in Italy of European e-reader Tolino.

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