Reidy reflects on Simon & Schuster's 2014

Reidy reflects on Simon & Schuster's 2014

Simon & Schuster has seen an "especially" productive year in business, with "encouraging" sales seen after joining US and UK subscription platforms.

In an end-of-year letter to staff and authors, Carolyn Reidy, president and c.e.o of Simon & Schuster in the US, said the publisher had had a successful year when it came to "the business of our business", naming the publisher's multi-year agreement with Amazon as one of its highlights.

Reidy said: "We made our backlist e-books available through subscription services in the US and abroad, and the results were immediately encouraging in both the volume and breadth of sales across our list. And our breakthrough, multi-year agreement with Amazon assures continuity of sales for our print and e-book titles, a return to the agency model and the preservation of our authors’ share of income generated from e-book sales."

The Amazon deal, agreed in October, included both print and e-books and was a "return to a version of agency", giving control of e-book pricing to S&S, and was “economically advantageous for both Simon & Schuster and its authors," Reidy said at the time.

Meanwhile, the publisher struck a global subscription deal with the  Scribd and Oyster e-book platforms in May.

Reidy also singled out the expansion of S&S's e-book library program in the US and Canada for praise and said there would be "further news on the international front shortly."

"This year the business of our business was especially productive, and our cultural predisposition to aggressively seek new models and markets has been rewarded," she said.

Simon & Schuster is also growing its lists in the US "through major acquisitions and with new publishing ventures, such as our partnerships with Jeter Publishing, Keywords Press and TED Books. The launch of internally developed publishing lines such as SAGA Press and Simon451 also gives us entrée into new publishing categories," Reidy said. "Internationally we are expanding local publishing efforts in both Canada and Australia," she added.

Anthony Doerr’s All the Light We Cannot See was singled out for praise by Reidy as "the most satisfying publishing event of the year", being "a book that we published with exceptional passion and skill, which galvanized staff across the company and at our bookseller partners".

In the UK, Reidy highlighted House of Ashes by Monique Roffey, which was also on the shortlist for the Costa Book Award for Best Novel, Poems that Make Grown Men Cry by Anthony Holden and Ben Holden, The Breakway by Nicole Cooke and England and Other Stories by Graham Swift as having achieved success.

"In April we marked 90 years since Simon & Schuster published its first book, a runaway bestseller, and looking back at 2014 I find abundant evidence that the ethos of our founders—editorial excellence married to creative publishing and supported by innovative business practices—still animates our company," Reidy said.