PRH acquires Barcelona-based Ediciones B from Grupo Zeta

PRH acquires Barcelona-based Ediciones B from Grupo Zeta

Penguin Random House has acquired publisher Ediciones B to become part of its Penguin Random House Grupo Editorial division (PRHGE) in Spain and Latin America to help it grow in the "strategically important" Spanish-speaking markets. 

The price agreed for the publisher has not been disclosed, but the deal builds on PRH's acquisition of Santillana Ediciones Generales in 2014, which it says has been "instrumental in driving us toward our global goals".

Markus Dohle, c.e.o. Penguin Random House, and Antonio Asensio Mosbah, chairman of Grupo Zeta, Ediciones B's former parent company, said the deal will close "once legal and administrative obligations are completed".

Ediciones B’s imprints, which include B, Bruguera, Vergara, Nova, B de Blook, B de Books, B de Bolsillo and B.cat, will retain their respective identities and independence within Grupo’s portfolio, and the newly combined company will maintain and support the editorial and entrepreneurial identity and autonomy of all its imprints. 

PRH said the addition of Ediciones B’s imprints will reinforce PRHGE’s "cultural preeminence" as well as its market share in Spain, Latin America, and the Spanish-speaking world, in particular singling out "pioneering" imprints Bruguera and Vergara as having "laid the groundwork for the Spanish publishing industry". 

PRH said the acquisition would grow its consumer-publishing business in Spain and strengthen its number-one position in the "high-growth" Latin American markets, thanks to the presence of Ediciones B’s imprints in Argentina, Chile, Colombia, Mexico, Uruguay, and Venezuela. Going forward, PRHGE will focus on expanding its position throughout all Spanish-language markets, said the company. 

PRHGE and Ediciones B will operate separately and independently, as before, until the deal closes, after which Núria Cabutí Brull will continue as PRHGE’s c.e.o. with the support of Román de Vicente, general manager of Ediciones B. The newly expanded Grupo Editorial expects to publish 2,000 titles a year. 

PRHGE, after the integration of Ediciones B, will continue to publish original Spanish-language and Spanish and Catalan translations of adult and children’s fiction and nonfiction books in hardback, paperback and digital (e-book and audiobook) formats under Ediciones B’s imprints B, Bruguera, Vergara, Nova, B de Blook, B de Books, B de Bolsillo and B.cat. 

These formats and categories also will be offered by PRHGE's ongoing imprints: Aguilar, Alamah, Alfaguara, Altea, Arena, Beascoa, Caballo de Troya, Cisne, Cliper, Collins, Companhia das letras, Conecta, Debate, Debolsillo, EnClave, Flash, Grijalbo, Literatura Random House, Lumen, Montena, Nube de tinta, Objetiva, Penguin Clásicos, Plaza & Janés, RAE, Reservoir Books, Rosa dels vents, Sudamericana, Suma de Letras and Taurus. 

As a result of the acquisition, PRHGE gains authors including Nobel Prize winners Svetlana Alexievich, Alice Munro, Mario Vargas Llosa, Gabriel García Márquez, José Saramago, J.M. Coetzee, Orhan Pamuk, Doris Lessing, V.S. Naipaul and Günter Grass; Cervantes Award winners Elena Poniatowska, Juan Marsé, Guillermo Cabrera Infante and Sergio Pitol.

PRHGE’s children’s and young adult publications and comics catalogues benefit from "a major enhancement", according to PRH, gaining Francisco Ibañez's Mortadelo and Filemón (Mort & Phil); TBO comics magazine; The Simpsons; and cartoon characters like Wally, Zipi and Zape, Capitán Trueno and Super Lopez. 

Markus Dohle, c.e.o. PRH, said: "With the acquisition of the highly regarded publishing house Ediciones B, we further expand and grow in the strategically important Spanish-speaking markets, and we build upon our commitment to providing our authors with outstanding publishing resources and maximum reach." 

Dohle added in a note to colleagues the acquisition represented a "local, customised approach to strengthening the breadth of our publishing programs" in its Spanish-language territories.

Antonio Asensio Mosbah, chairman of Grupo Zeta, said that the sale of Ediciones B will allow Grupo Zeta to focus on their strategy of promoting their media assets. “At this juncture, our company needs to make a huge effort to drive the digital transformation of our media while preserving the high quality and prestige of our brands and our media," he said.

Núria Cabutí Brull, PRHGE’s c.e.o, added: “The acquisition of Ediciones B advances us one major step further in our commitment to both authors and readers. Authors will remain our highest priority, as we will always strive to provide them with the highest-quality editorial, marketing and distribution support for their books."