Penguin Random House CEO Markus Dohle’s annual letter to company employees emphasized the acquisitions the publisher has made across the publishing globe in the past year.
While Dohle said revenue growth will come “first and foremost, organically,” he added that it will be augmented by strategic acquisitions in various markets. Dohle noted that to achieve PRH's goal of increasing its market share in the children’s market, the company made a number of purchases this year, including the purchase of the global publisher Little Tiger Group, buying the book-publishing assets of India’s Duckbill Books, and acquiring the intellectual property world rights for Eric Carle. The acquisition of Spain’s Salamandra also boosted PRH's children’s publishing footprint in that country, Dohle wrote. The year also saw PRH take a 45% stake in Sourcebooks, one of America's largest independent publishers of adult and children’s books.
Other international growth initiatives mentioned by Dohle included the purchase of Catalan-language publisher La Campana Llibres in July; the launch of its first South East Asia list through its new Penguin Random House in Singapore division; and an increase in its ownership stake in Brazil’s Companhia das Letras.
Dohle wrote that one thing all those acquisitions have in common is that the “founders and leaders of these companies wanted to become part of Penguin Random House because of our performance and our culture.” Dohle noted that since the merger of Penguin and Random House, he has said that the sheer size of the company would not guarantee a competitive advantage in the marketplace. “Rather,” he wrote, “ what’s key to our success is leveraging our scale as a force for greater good and demonstrating to our authors that we can connect them to more readers than any other publisher.”
Dohle closed the letter by thanking PRH employees for another successful year “globally” and suggesting that the company's acquisition spree is not done yet. “Let us continue to implement our local growth strategies—both organically, by publishing the very best and most successful books, and by welcoming new companies and their respective colleagues to our family of imprints around the world," he wrote.