Effective January 1, 2002, the Time Warner Trade Publishing group will change its name to the AOL Time Warner Book Group. At the same time, Little, Brown and Co. UK will become Time Warner Books UK.

The name change is being made to reflect the merger of AOL and Time Warner and is not expected to have any effect on the day-to-day operations of the book group. Little, Brown and Warner Books will continue as the group's two main imprints. "The focus of our activity will continue to be the individual imprints that control our publishing destiny," said Larry Kirshbaum, chairman of AOLTWBG. The new corporate name made its debut at the Frankfurt Book Fair, although company executives, citing the volatile international conditions, delayed the formal announcement until October 15.

On the financial side, the book group appears to be fulfilling Kirshbaum's prediction that, after a slow first half of 2001, the company would perform better in the last six months of the year (News, July 30). According to its parent company, sales were up in the third quarter, led by Jack: Straight from the Gut. Book group president Maureen Egan said the Welch book has done very well "despite its unfortunate laydown date." Tiger Woods's How I Play Golf has gotten off to a strong start and is expected to drive sales for the publisher in the fourth quarter.