Bonnier Books – the parent company of Bonnier Books UK – is launching a new publishing house in Denmark early next year.
Gutkind Publishers will be led by Jacob Søndergaard in the role of publishing director and Jim Zetterlund as c.e.o.
The company’s namesake is the Jewish immigrant Gutkind Hirschel from Dresden, an ancestor of the Bonnier family who started his first business in Copenhagen in 1804.
The new publishing house will focus on “quality literature in a broad sense”, according to Søndergaard, who said he hoped to offer “a modern and lasting alternative to existing Danish publishing house”.
Specifically, it will mainly publish Danish and translated fiction for adults as well as some narrative non-fiction, “from the new and rare to the established and market-oriented”.
“Quality will be the common denominator”, Bonnier Books promised, with the publishers tasked to “meet the challenges of the literary public with responsible publishing standards, experience and innovation”.
Denmark will be the seventh European market in which Bonnier Books now runs publishing businesses.
Bonnier Books c.e.o. Håkan Rudels said: “We view the Nordic countries as our home market, and it is an incredible joy that we are now able to launch an ambitious publishing house in Denmark, which, through its name, gives a nod to our history.”
Søndergaard said: “Bonnier has asked me to create a new Danish publishing house that will focus on quality literature in a broad sense. It is a task that I am accepting with gratitude and courage, and I am looking forward to putting together a team and throwing myself at the challenge in early 2020. The current state of the Danish book market calls for new initiatives, and Bonnier has both the resources, willpower and knowhow to create a modern and lasting alternative to existing Danish publishing houses.”
Initially Gutkind Publishers will employ between five and six staff, with plans for 20–25 book releases a year. The intention is “to grow significantly over the coming years”, according to Zetterlund.
Commenting on the work split between publishing director and c.e.o. for Gutkind Publishers, Zetterlund said further: “We agree to keep it simple: Jacob focuses on what is most important, and, 365 days a year, this means the authors, the books and the team, while I focus on everything else.”
Søndergaard has 20 years experience in Danish publishing. He was literary editor at Lindhardt &Ringhof, from 2006–2008 at the publisher at People’s Press; and, since 2008, he has been at Rosinante &Co as editor-in-chief and then publisher. Zetterlund is c.o.o./ c.f.o. at Bonnier Books.