Agent Patrick Walsh is to leave the agency he co-founded – Conville & Walsh – to set up on his own in Soho, taking authors such as Gaia Vince, Andrea Wulf and Tom Holland with him.
Walsh is now leaving both Conville & Walsh and Curtis Brown on 15th June to found a new literary agency called PEW trading from 46 Lexington Street in London’s Soho.
He said he was making the move to “explore new pastures” but would still be working with Conville & Walsh to sell translation rights.
Walsh said: “I have loved working with the team at Curtis Brown. It’s been a genuine pleasure to come to know their dynamic team. Our staff and clients have been warmly welcomed in that exciting set-up, and I know that the Curtis Brown group will go from strength to strength. For me the drive for this new company has simply been to explore new pastures.”
He added: "For me, I enjoy the start-up energy and excitement and I would like to spend more time thinking about what areas and books I would like to work in. Everyone at Curtis Brown couldn't have been more lovely about it."
The authors Walsh represents include Tom Holland, Nick Harkaway, Andrea Wulf, winner of the Costa Biography prize, Gaia Vince, winner of the Royal Society Book of the Year, David Bodanis, Anita Anand, Thomas Harding, Adam Creed, Clive Stafford-Smith, Jim Al-Khalili and more.
Translation rights for PEW’s clients will still be handled by Conville & Walsh's Alexandra McNicoll and Jake Smith-Bosanquet, with film/dramatic rights coordinated by Curtis Brown's Camilla Young, Nick Marston and Luke Speed.
Walsh said: “These partnerships remain incredibly valuable to me, both personally and professionally. Above all, I want to thank Clare Conville for her friendship, kindness and sheer entrepreneurial drive over the years during which we have worked together. Clare is and will always be an inspiration."
Jonny Geller, joint c.e.o of Curtis Brown, added: “We all wish Patrick luck and are delighted to be continuing our relationship with his wonderful authors in his new venture.”
Curtis Brown bought a 50% stake in fellow agency Conville & Walsh in February 2013 with Walsh saying at the time: “This is about our authors. For the last eighteen months we've explored how best to extend our authors' reach in the new publishing multiverse. Working with Curtis Brown, who we've long known and respected, struck us as an exciting solution."
In March 2015, Curtis Brown acquired 100% of Conville and Walsh, with Conville saying her agency had seen its “best year” following the merger.
Contact details for PEW will be: PEW Literary Agency Limited 46, Lexington Street, London W1F OLP and Walsh can be contacted on Patrick@pewliterary.com.