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Posts Tagged ‘Matt Shatz’

Digital Reorganization at Random House, Inc., Part Two

RH_Logo_Sm.jpgAs we noted earlier this afternoon, Random House, Inc. announced some sweeping adjustments in digital responsibilities at the conglomerate publisher. In a staff memo, Sales, Operations, and Digital president Madeline McIntosh explained the changes and gave some insight into recent projects–returning to Random House leadership after a stint at Amazon.

Among the many changes, V.P. of Online Marketing Pete McCarthy will have expanded responsibilities. The memo praised his department’s “work with Doubleday on the ‘second wave’ campaign for Dan Brown‘s The Lost Symbol [as] an excellent example of the sales magic that can be created by combining corporate technology and analytics expertise with the publisher’s stellar creative campaign.” In addition to his old responsibilities McCarthy will now oversee Christine McNamara in her new role as V.P. of Partnership Development.

Crown Publishing V.P. of Group Sales Director Amanda Close will now serve as V.P. of Digital Sales and Business Development. McIntosh explained why: “she stepped in with great agility when Jaci and I asked her to coordinate the cross-functional team evaluating Apple’s new e-book program.”

Finally, Random House’s V.P. of Digital Matt Shatz will be leaving to serve as Head of Strategic Content Relationships at Nokia.

Read more about the changes here. The full memo follows after the jump.

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The Next, Still Pessimistic Chapter for E-Books

The New York Times’ Brad Stone doesn’t really add much more about the next generation e-book readers like Amazon Kindle and the Sony Reader, but since people reading the NYT aren’t necessarily reading GalleyCat (or tech-related websites and blogs, for that matter) the piece, which also looks at Google‘s plans for e-bookdom, at least gets the basics down – and the skepticism in place.

“Books represent a pretty good value for consumers. They can display them and pass them to friends, and they understand the business model,” said Michael Gartenberg, research director at Jupiter Research, who is skeptical that a profitable e-book market will emerge anytime soon. “We have had dedicated e-book devices on the market for more than a decade, and the payoff always seems to be just a few years away,” he said. But with the Reader getting attention (if not sales) and Amazon’s imminent e-book device on their radar, most major publishers have accelerated the conversion of their titles into electronic formats. “There has been an awful lot of energy around e-books in the last six to 12 months, and we are now making a lot more titles available,” said Matt Shatz, vice president for digital at Random House, which plans to have around 6,500 e-books available by 2008. It has had about 3,500 available for the last few years.

Still, some retailers remain wary – especially Barnes & Noble, famously invested in e-books until they got out in 2003. “If an affordable device can come to the market, sure we’d love to bring it to our customers, and we will,” said B&N CEO Steve Riggio. “But right now we don’t see an affordable device in the immediate future.”