Wednesday, September 24, 2014

New Leadership Team for Penguin Random House New Zealand

24 September 2014 Auckland: Margaret Thompson, MD, Penguin Random House New Zealand, today announced a new leadership team for the organisation. The new Penguin Random House Leadership team will include:
Becky Innes has been appointed Head of Marketing. Becky’s contribution to the enormous and continuing sell-through of the Fifty Shades of Grey trilogy; the partnerships developed in support of sell-through of key titles, such as What Was I Thinking and the MasterChef winners’ books; and her management of the new website, increasing traffic by 300%, have all been significant factors in Random House winning the Booksellers New Zealand Sales and Promotional Support award four years in a row. Becky’s experience planning local marketing strategy for brand authors and guiding digital strategy for Random House will be invaluable for Penguin Random House New Zealand.
In the role of Head of Publicity is Yvonne Thynne. Responsible for the Australian Women’s Weekly sponsored tour for Jo Seagar, a model which proved so successful that later this year it will be leveraged for Chelsea Winter, Yvonne also played an instrumental role in assuring the attendance of high profile international authors such as Kate Atkinson and Irvine Welsh at book festivals in New Zealand. Her skills in creating mass market media campaigns and tour management have been utilised by local and international authors from Paul Henry to Terry Pratchett.
Carrie Welch will take on the role of Sales Director. A strong and vocal advocate for New Zealand in decisions made on international titles, Carrie has also led the Business Development team at Penguin responsible for sourcing products including: the Roald Dahl Phizz Whizzing Collection, Hairy Maclary Bag of Books and the Mister Pip limited edition hardback. Under Carrie’s guidance, the Jojo Moyes brand was reinvigorated in the New Zealand market. Me Before You, Penguin’s first Jojo Moyes title, saw a 70% increase in sales through bookseller tills.

Debra Millar has accepted the role of Publishing Director. Most recent amongst Debra’s successes in a long career in Publishing, was the acquisition of John Key: Portrait of a Prime Minister, a fixture on the bestsellers list since its launch at the end of June 2014. In addition to the acquisition of the best-selling Treats from Little and Friday cookbook and Lady Pippa Blake’s book, Pippa Blake: Journey, she has overseen a range of innovative publishing formats that have extended the reach and appeal of author Lynley Dodd’s much-loved Hairy Maclary and Friends books. Over the years, Debra has worked closely with a number of leading New Zealand authors across a range of genres, including Lloyd Jones, Patricia Grace, Anne Salmond, Alexa Johnston, Simon Gault and Allyson Gofton.


Anonymous said...

As a bookseller for whom Penguin Random are our largest supplier I unfortunately have to make this an anonymous comment.
The best publishing company that we have dealt with in the last 10 years has been Random House. Outstanding people superb service and the best list of NZ publishing by a country mile. .Unfortunately I can't say the same for Penguin NZ.
With this merger [takeover, call it what you will] I like most NZ Booksellers expected that the team that made Random House Publisher of the Year in NZ for more years than I can count would be retained in the new company.
However the appointment of Gabrielle Coyne as Managing Director Asia Pacific [an ex Penguin employee]has meant many of the outstanding Random staff are being dispensed with.
This started with the outstanding Managing Director of Random House NZ Karen Fearns being made redundant.
And now I read that Nicola Legat is also going. She has been the best NZ Publisher over the last 10 years by a country mile. Both critically and commercially.
I am intrigued to see that the person who got the job Penguin Publisher Debra Miller has listed as one of her achievements the book Pippa Blake: Journey. I wonder if Penguin would like to disclose how many copies of this title were remaindered or pulped.
These are very sad days for the NZ Book Industry.

Graham Beattie said...

Normally I do not post anonymous comments but under the circumstances I decided to make an exception with the above comment.

Peter Rigg said...

As an independent bookseller based in the South Island I agree wholeheartedly with the comments by Anonymous. When you read the resumes
provided in your blog Graham, it doesn't really instill in me the greatest confidence in this new team.

Joan Druett said...