(Updates source to company press release, adds details)
June 24 Lagardere SCA's Hachette Book
Group said it would buy Perseus Books Group, keeping the books
business of the sixth-largest U.S. publisher and selling the
client services businesses to Ingram Content Group.
Hachette, the fourth-largest U.S. publisher, said it would
make Perseus's publishing business a new division comprising of
nine imprints, including Avalon Books, Basic Books, Da Capo
Press, PublicAffairs, and Running Press.
Perseus brings out about 700 new titles per year and has a
backlist of more than 6,000 books, Hachette said in a statement.
The financial details of the deal were not specified.
The deal would give Hachette leverage in a months-long
dispute with e-commerce giant Amazon.com Inc over the
pricing of e-books, the New York Times said. (nyti.ms/1l7JxRz)
Amazon has cut the number of print books it buys from
Hachette, delayed the delivery of some titles and even removed
an option for buyers to pre-order "The Silkworm", Harry Potter
author J.K. Rowling's second crime novel, written under the
pseudonym Robert Galbraith.
With the world's largest online retailer now dominating the
e-book market, it has begun demanding that publishers cut prices
and pay higher fees.
Authors and other publishing insiders have, in recent weeks,
accused Amazon of wielding its power as a major retailer to gain
an unfair advantage during contract talks.
Hachette said on Tuesday it would sell Perseus's client
services division to book distributor Ingram, a unit of Ingram
Industries, to form a distributor with more than 400 clients
ranging from DreamWorks Press to Harvard Business Review Press.
Perseus Books's Chief Executive David Steinberger will leave
once the deal is completed, but remain with Hachette as a
consultant for an unspecified period.
(Reporting by Soham Chatterjee and Subrat Patnaik in Bangalore;
Editing by Simon Jennings and Savio D'Souza)