PRH US merges two major divisions, Random House and Crown

PRH US merges two major divisions, Random House and Crown

PRH US has combined two of its adult publishing divisions, Random House and Crown, under the leadership of Gina Centrello, president and publisher of Random House (pictured).

Crown president and publisher Maya Mavjee will leave the company at the end of the year. David Drake, executive vice president and deputy publisher of Crown, and all Crown's senior leadership team now report to Centrello.

Announcing the development in a letter to staff, PRH US c.e.o. Madeline McIntosh promised that both Random House and Crown would retain their own distinct editorial identities.

Acknowledging that staff might find the move "unexpected", she explained: "As I have discussed with many of you over the past few months, our market is evolving in some fundamental ways. Book discovery and buying patterns continue to shift, resulting in growth opportunities in the nonfiction categories in which Crown in particular already has a strong foothold: food, lifestyle, health, wellness, business, and Christian. To further pursue this growth, we will need to do two things simultaneously. First, we must expand and strengthen the expert publishing teams who are specialized in and dedicated to each category. Second, we must invest even more aggressively in title-level and scaled marketing programs, capabilities, and partnerships. This will ensure that we not only maximize the sales for each individual book, but also keep pace with consumer trends.

"Both Crown and Random House have been keenly aware of these market opportunities and have been applying their impressive creative and entrepreneurial energies to meet them. I am confident that, teamed together, with joined talents, resources, and strengths, as a united division they will be able to move even more quickly and effectively."

Bringing the two together allows for "more cross-pollination in our efforts to reach readers", she said. Centrello's "collaborative, nurturing and strategic" leadership will empower her expanded team to reach an even higher bar of achievement for their authors, while Random House's "innovative" marketing can now be applied to the benefit of the Crown list. Meanwhile Crown brings expertise in effectively engaging consumers across their portfolio of authors and brings exposure to markets "outside of our New York epicentre" with its publishing operations in California and Colorado.

"Together, the group will be able to offer its authors and readers even more robust service and selection across literary and commercial fiction, and narrative and category nonfiction, than ever before," McIntosh said.

Publishers Weekly said both groups will retain their existing names at present, and the changes will not affect other PRH US divisions.