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Update: Ragged Bears files for administration
29.02.12 | Charlotte Williams
Ragged Bears Publishing has entered into administration due to the "difficult" foreign rights market, with the publisher's original parent company, Ragged Bears Ltd, to "take back the responsibilities and commitments of Ragged Bears Publishing Ltd".
Ragged Bears Publishing appointed The Frost Group in Christchurch, Dorset as its administrator on 17th February. Founded in the early 1990s, the picture book specialist publishes folktales, fiction, activity and pop-up books and learning support and educational titles, including the Dinosaur Roar! series by Paul Stickland.
Former publisher Martin West said, that Ragged Bears Publishing "has been restructured with [parent company] Ragged Bears Ltd . . . taking back the responsibilities and commitments of Ragged Bears Publishing Ltd.” He said that prior to the company going into administration, he had been working on a part-time basis with Ragged Bears Publishing m.d. Henrietta Stickland, with one person in the rights department, and one person in sales, also on a part-time basis.
West declined to comment on what will happen to creditors, but said titles published by Ragged Bears Publishing will remain in print and continue to be available from email@example.com. He could not give an estimate of the number of titles currently in print.
West said: "I think it is a fairly common position these days that they are short of cash. Ragged Bears had relied heavily on picture book co-edition sales, but it is very difficult selling rights at the moment, particularly overseas. And that more than anything has caused the lack of cash. I was employed to build up a fiction list which I started doing, but that was more of a long-term plan and the cash was a problem in the short term."
Ragged Bears Ltd is owned by Pamela Shirley, who set up the company 27 years ago with her late husband, Charles Shirley.
The administrator refused to comment.