Crown Restructures

The Crown Publishing Group is reorganizing its imprint and publishing leadership structures. The changes resulted in more responsibility for Molly Stern, Aaron Wehner, and Tina Constable. Executive editor Rick Horgan is among those leaving the company.

Duggan Gets Crown Imprint

Tim Duggan, currently v-p, executive editor at HarperCollins, is heading to Crown to lead his own eponymous imprint. Duggan steps into his new role as v-p, publisher of Tim Duggan Books on June 9.

Chinese Company Buys PIL’s Kids’ Unit

Chinese publisher and printer Phoenix Media has agreed to acquire the children’s publishing unit of Lincolnwood, Ill.–based Publications International Ltd. (PIL), for $80 million.

Bookstore Sales Down 9.5% in Quarter

Bookstore sales fell 7.8% in March 2014, compared to the same month last year, to $683 million, according to estimates released by the U.S. Census Bureau. For the first quarter of 2014, bookstore sales declined 9.5%, to $2.92 billion.

Lynch Succeeds Boudreaux at Ecco

Megan Lynch has been named editorial director at Ecco, succeeding Lee Boudreaux, who recently decamped from the HarperCollins imprint to oversee her own unit at Hachette. Lynch, who was a senior editor at Riverhead, will start at HC on May 28.

Inkling Refocuses, Lays Off 25% of Staff

Inkling, a multimedia publishing platform, has laid off about 25% of its workforce, after refocusing its business model from consumer e-book sales to a business enterprise model. The layoffs are concentrated in Inkling’s consumer business.

Close to Run PRH Consumer Marketing Unit

Penguin Random House has created a consumer marketing development and operations group, which will be led by Amanda Close. The unit combines the corporate consumer marketing operations that Penguin and RH had previously operated independently.

Murphy Rises At SMP

John Murphy, divisional v-p and director of publicity at St. Martin’s Press, has been promoted to the newly created role of v-p, publishing strategy. Tracey Guest, formerly advising director of corporate communications at Penguin, will step into Murphy’s vacated position as v-p, director of publicity.

First-Quarter Sales Slipped At Lagardère

First-quarter sales at Lagardère Publishing fell 6.2%, to €393 million, compared to the same period in 2013. At Hachette Book Group, its U.S. division, first-quarter revenue was “slightly below budget, but gross profit was ahead of budget,” according to HBG CEO Michael Pietsch.