'Roadblocks removed for Springer'

'Roadblocks removed for Springer'

The integration of the component parts of Springer Nature is “almost done”, its c.e.o. Derk Haank has told The Bookseller Daily.

The company was created by the merger of Springer Science+Business Media and the majority of Macmillan Science and Education in May 2015 by owners Holtzbrinck and BC Partners.

“The reasons why we got together have been vindicated and ascribed to by all the people in the management team…from my perspective it is done,” Haank said. “I don’t see any major roadblocks anymore, the rest is just execution. But I am not underestimating how much work needs to be done to execute all these things.”

Haank revealed the company hired an agency to investigate the different cultures of the two companies and work out the best way to combine them.

“On the one hand, there are many similarities because these two are global companies,” Haank said. “From that perspective we shouldn’t overdo the differences.

Having said that, there were quite a few cultural differences on how things were being done. What we do is the same, it’s the way that we do things that has changed.”

Haank added that the point of the merger was not about cost savings or integration benefits, but even so, the company is forecast to reduce its cost base by 5% as part of the merger. In March, Annette Thomas, chief scientific officer, departed the company, which employs 13,000 people. When asked about redundancies resulting from the merger, Haank said: “Five per cent of the cost base is several hundred people in total. They have mainly been back-office staff in departments such as finance, but this has been done without any major reorganisation. People have come and gone in flows.”