Publishers Weekly Up for Sale … Again
According to a Publishers Weekly (PW) report yesterday, PW has been officially put on the market for sale, along with its affiliated publications, Library Journal and School Library Journal. Earlier this year, PW's editor-in-chief, Sara Nelson, had been laid off. Nelson was one of 7 percent of the staff, including several other top editor's, laid off at PW's parent company, Reed Business Information (a Reed Elsevier company), following Reed Elsevier's failed attempt to sell Reed Business Information in its entirety last year.
The PW group's sale is reportedly part of a strategy by Reed Business Information to dump the majority of its U.S. trade magazines, according to PW. In a memo last year announcing the company's first attempt at selling its publishing business, the company's former CEO (whose resignation was announced yesterday as well, according to PW), wrote: "Reed Elsevier no longer views advertising-dependent businesses as aligned with its growth strategy."
According to Reuters news agency, "Reports surfaced last week that new [Reed Elsevier] CEO Ian Smith [appointed CEO in March] wanted to keep the [publishing] division, but sell some of the assets. (He could be holding on to the rest in hopes of a better price down the road.)"
The company has named as acting CEO John Poulin, who has been with the company for 20 years, most recently as executive vice president and CFO.