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Posts Tagged ‘Soft Skull Press’

Charlie Winton Steps Down as Counterpoint Publisher

Counterpoint and Soft Skull Press CEO and publisher Charlie Winton has decided to step down as publisher. He will continue to serve as CEO and acquire books as executive editor-at-large.

The company has picked Rolph Blythe to serve as publisher, he will start in the new position on May 1st. Blythe has worked as a Hungry Mind Bookstore bookseller, editor at The Hungry Mind Review, and as a marketing manager at Counterpoint Press and Basic Books. Winton had this statement in the release:

Counterpoint/Soft Skull is coming off our best year ever in 2012 with net revenues increasing over 30 percent. We’ve built a fantastic team, and the group of authors we are working with continue to evolve in a very positive direction. The company is well positioned for me to make this transition away from day to day operations … My continuing roles will allow me to remain actively engaged and at the same time provide the company with an energetic new player. Rolph brings a robust blend of experience to the company.

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Soft Skull Purchased by Winton, Shoemaker LLC

After last week’s announcement of the massive restructuring of Perseus – leading in part to layoffs, imprint cancellations and the formation of a new venture by Charlie Winton – now comes a new announcement that Winton, Shoemaker & Co., LLC has acquired Soft Skull Press. This is their third acquisition this year. In February of 2007, they acquired Shoemaker & Hoard from the Avalon Publishing Group, and earlier in May they acquired Counterpoint from The Perseus Books Group.

As with the Counterpoint transaction, the Soft Skull transaction is expected to close in June. As announced last week, when the transactions close the company will be renamed Counterpoint, LLC. Soft Skull will remain as an imprint of Counterpoint. Soft Skull’s Publisher Richard Nash will join the company as an Executive Editor and will also maintain the title of Editorial Director of the imprint. Nash will acquire for both the Counterpoint imprint as well as continuing to acquire for the Soft Skull imprint. In the fall 2007 season, titles acquired by Soft Skull will be published under the Soft Skull imprint and will be distributed by PGW. Beginning in winter 2008, all Counterpoint and Soft Skill titles will be distributed by PGW.

Winton says, “Richard is a tremendous addition to our team. He brings with him a number of authors and relationships that will fit within the Counterpoint list and that compliment Jack Shoemaker‘s editorial sensibilities. At the same time, by maintaining the Soft Skull imprint we will be able to extend the range of what we are able to publish.”

Today in AMS: Consortium has its say, AMS Viability

Radio Free PGW continues its daily accounting of the AMS bankruptcy fallout, and its top post this morning is quite the doozy: reports from Consortium, the distributor bought by Perseus last summer. Turns out that Perseus, upon acquisition, told Consortium faithful that “nothing here is going to change.” Fast forward eight weeks and the story became this: “‘We respect the contributions of each and every one of you and some of your departments are going to be separated from the company.’ The man couldn’t even tell us we were fired!” More to the point, “two weeks ago, we trained the people who will replace us.” Not exactly a rosy sign for incoming PGW employees, now is it?

Meanwhile, PW Daily’s Jim Milliot, aside from reporting more on Perseus’s “white knight” plan for PGW publishers, has more on the bankruptcy court’s rejection of Simon & Schuster‘s bid to reclaim about $5 million in inventory from AMS’s warehouses. In its objection to yesterday’s ruling, S&S’s attorneys used strong language about the future prospects of AMS, arguing that actions taken by the banks and AMS “have likely doomed this case to an inevitable liquidation.” Specifically, S&S contended that AMS has “refused to propose a reasonable inventory returns program and have taken the unsupportable position that no returns should be credited against pre-petition sales even though the returned books were sold under such invoices.” In order to protect their interests, S&S and most major publishers (with the current exception of Penguin) have stopped shipping to AMS on a post-petition basis, S&S said, and if that doesn’t change “it is unlikely AMS has any reasonable chance of successfully reorganizing.”

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