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Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Gets Culinary Program, Webster's New World Reference and CliffsNotes from John Wiley & Sons

Wiley's Natalie Chapman heads to HMH; Rux Martin gets imprint

November 8, 2012 By Brian Howard
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Big news out of Hoboken and D.C. today as Houghton Mifflin Harcourt and Wiley announce that HMH has acquired several assets from Wiley:

Quoth the press release: “This strategic acquisition reflects HMH’s continued commitment to consumer publishing, and represents an exciting growth opportunity within the culinary market. Even as digital sales increase, the print cookbook segment shows particular strength, both at HMH and within the market in general,” said Gary Gentel, President of HMH’s Trade & Reference division. “The combination of Wiley’s culinary, reference, and CliffsNotes lines with our existing business will significantly strengthen HMH’s market position in both the culinary and reference categories.”

Also heading HMH-ward is Wiley VP and publisher Natalie Chapman, who will head up HMH's culinary program (reporting to General Interest Group Senior Vice President and Publisher Bruce Nichols) as well as a number of Wiley editorial, marketing, publicity, and production staff.

In another development related to the move, HMH Senior Executive Editor Rux Martin will launch Rux Martin Books.

Full press release follows

Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Acquires Award-Winning Culinary Program, Webster’s New World Reference Titles and CliffsNotes Guides from John Wiley & Sons, Inc.
Hoboken, N.J. and Washington D.C.

Acquisition to include segment-leading assets and brands such as the Betty Crocker series, Better Homes and Gardens line, and Mark Bittman’s How to Cook Everything franchise

Houghton Mifflin Harcourt (HMH) today announced that its Trade & Reference division has acquired the assets of John Wiley & Sons, Inc.’s (NYSE: JWa, JWb) culinary portfolio, in addition to classic reference titles Webster’s New World Dictionary and CliffsNotes. 

Wiley’s celebrated cookbook collection includes the flagship Betty Crocker series, in addition to other General Mills-branded lines, the Better Homes and Gardens line licensed from Meredith Corporation, Mark Bittman’s  How to Cook Everything franchise – including the bestselling culinary app for iOS, and high-profile authors such as Rose Levy Beranbaum, Marcus Samuelsson and Ellie Krieger. This acquisition will complement HMH’s premier authors and cookbooks, including Jacques Pépin, Dorie Greenspan, The Gourmet Cookbook and the Hello, Cupcake! franchise.

“This strategic acquisition reflects HMH’s continued commitment to consumer publishing, and represents an exciting growth opportunity within the culinary market. Even as digital sales increase, the print cookbook segment shows particular strength, both at HMH and within the market in general,” said Gary Gentel, President of HMH’s Trade & Reference division. “The combination of Wiley’s culinary, reference, and CliffsNotes lines with our existing business will significantly strengthen HMH’s market position in both the culinary and reference categories.”

 
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