Simon & Schuster was founded in New York City in 1924 by Richard L. Simon and M. Lincoln ("Max") Schuster. Simon & Schuster became the trade publishing division of the CBS Corporation in 2006, and the company’s imprints include Simon & Schuster, Scribner, Atria, Touchstone, Gallery Books, Pocket Books, Howard Books, Threshold Editions, and Free Press. Major children’s imprints include Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers, Atheneum Books for Young Readers, Simon Pulse, Aladdin, Little Simon, Beach Lane Books, Margaret K. McElderry Books, Paula Wiseman Books, Caitlyn Dlouhy Books, and Simon Spotlight.
Simon & Schuster publishes over 2,000 titles annually under 35 different imprints. The group has publishing and distribution operations in the United States, Canada, the United Kingdom and Australia, as well as an international sales presence in every major market. A new international company, Simon & Schuster India, was launched in 2011.
Analysis & Key Developments
During 2016 Simon & Schuster generated 6% of the CBS Corporation’s consolidated revenues. The company’s revenues marginally decreased in 2016 to 767 million USD from 780 million USD in 2015. The 2% decrease reflects lower digital book sales, partially offset by growth in digital audio sales. Apart from that the operating income increased by 4.4% during the year from 114 million USD in 2015 to 119 million USD. The increase in profits coupled with the drop in revenue resulted in a 15.5% operating margin, up from 14.6% in 2015. Major new releases represented a significant portion of Simon & Schuster’s sales throughout the year. In the domestic and international markets, the company was subjected to global trends and local economic conditions.
During 2016 Simon & Schuster’s children publishing division announced the launch of their new imprint Salaam Reads. The imprint is focused on Muslim characters and stories and aims to publish books for readers of all ages, including picture books, as well as middle grade and YA titles.
In July 2016 the company entered into a sales and distribution agreement with Ryland, Peters & Small, a UK-based publisher of high-quality lifestyle books, and Hazelden Publishing, a division of the Hazelden Betty Ford Foundation and the leading publisher of addiction recovery and self-help resources. The company now handles the publisher’s distribution in the North American market.
In September 2016 Simon & Schuster started a sales and distribution agreement with NorthSouth Books, the US-based branch of Swiss publishing company NordSued Verlag. Under the agreement, in January 2017, Simon & Schuster will handle distribution in the United States, Canada, and Open Market territories of NorthSouth Books’ new and backlist titles.
In November 2016 the company announced the acquisition of Adams Media, a nonfiction publisher, which publishes approximately 200 frontlist titles per year, and has a backlist of more than 1,200 titles. The purchase includes Adams' fiction imprints Merit Press, Crimson Romance, and Tyrus Books.
Simon & Schuster has publishing and distribution operations in the United States, Canada, the United Kingdom and Australia, as well as an international sales presence in every major market. A new international company, Simon & Schuster India, was launched in 2011.
Simon & Schuster’s digital formats include electronic books and audio books. In 2016, the sale of digital content represented approximately 23% of Simon & Schuster’s revenues, down from 25% in 2015. The overall decrease in corporate revenues was attributed to lower digital book sales, offset by growth in digital audio sales. “S&S's strongest performing division in 2016 was audio, which benefited from another year of double-digit growth in digital audio,” Carolyn Reidy noted, although the company expects that electronic books will continue to represent a significant portion of the revenues in the coming years.
Simon & Schuster currently has more than 18,000 e-books available for sale, with e-books sold in nearly 250 non-English speaking territories around the world. Simon & Schuster acquired the distribution of Start Publishing’s (publishing division of Start Media) new and backlist titles exclusively in digital format. The Start Publishing catalog consists of over 7,000 titles throughout twelve imprints.
In 2016, Simon & Schuster published 277 New York Times bestsellers in hardcover, paperback and electronic formats, collectively, including 33 New York Times #1 bestsellers. Bestselling titles in 2016 include Born to Run by Bruce Springsteen, A Man Called Ove by Fredrik Backman and End of Watch by Stephen King. Best-selling children’s titles include Lady Midnight by Cassandra Clare, Dork Diaries 11: Tales from a Not-So-Friendly Frenemy by Rachel Renée Russell and Rush Revere and The Presidency by Rush Limbaugh and Kathryn Adams Limbaugh.