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 shareholder 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.
GeMS was founded in its current form 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
Financial information was provided by Gruppo Messaggerie, and only revenues from the publishing and book distribution were included for this ranking.
In 2016, GeMS resumed its positive development, with the best results in four years and an 11% growth of the market share.
After a period of rapid growth until 2010, all the group’s activities confronted an overall shrinking book market, and a general economic crisis in Italy. GeMS continued to invest in the digital division where it estimates a 18% share of the e-book market.
The Gruppo Messaggerie, acting as a holding structure, oversees the company’s publishing, book distribution and e-commerce, and claims 37% percent of the Italian book trade. After merging with its former competitor PDE, GeMS added Feltrinelli, Laterza, Sellerio, Il Mulino, and Il Castoro to its roster of imprints in distribution. The group’s company Opportunity is also a leader in book distribution in Italian supermarkets.
Achille Mauri is President of the group. Stefano Mauri, President and CEO of GeMS, was appointed Vice-President and CEO for the group, overseeing strategic developments as of 2012. Alberto Ottieri, head of the distribution arm, has been CEO for the group since 2012.
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.