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Career Press Looks To Open a New Page
Calvin Reid -- 4/3/00

As it celebrates 15 years as an independent publisher of business, career and motivational titles, Career Press reports three years of impressive sales growth and plans to launch New Page Books, a new general nonfiction imprint.

Career Press, based in Franklin Lakes, N.J., was founded by Ron Fry, its president and publisher, who also happens to be one of the firm's bestselling authors. CP publishes 45-50 titles annually and has annual sales of about $5 million. Over the last three years, sales have grown by 35%, according to Anne Brook, v-p and associate publisher, and the company has grown from 12 employees to 20.

Originally launched as a publisher of career directories aimed exclusively at libraries, CP currently has a backlist of 300 titles on a wide variety of nonfiction topics, including personal finance, management, weddings and study skills. Fry is the author of 101 Great Answers to the Toughest Interview Questions and the perennial bestselling How to Study program, a six-book series that has sold more than two million total copies. Fry said the CP philosophy--"Publish the highest quality hardcover and paperback books and then promote and publicize them full force"--has not changed.

The press will put that philosophy to work for New Page Books, which will be launched at BEA in Chicago; the imprint's first books will be released in the fall with titles on New Age spirituality, weddings and health. Brook told PW that New Page will publish about 15 titles a year, including some titles moved over from the general backlist. Among the upcoming New Page titles are Exploring Wicca by Lady Sabrina and Magickal Astrology by Skye Alexander.

Brook cited the house's "new Internet savvy" as contributing to its recent success. "We're looking for Web-content partnerships," she said. International sales and rights sales are up, and Brook credited a new distributor for pushing Canadian sales "way up." She also pointed to the company's growth through nontraditional book channels.

Career Press uses commission sales reps, but handles its own fulfillment and runs its own warehouse. Brook is optimistic: "Returns are down. Profits are up, and we're looking for new ways to sell more books."

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