Thursday, December 18, 2008

Random House Restructuring Blues

Publishers Lunch -- no link, sorry, it comes via e-mail -- reports the following:
  • at Doubleday Broadway, at least 6 job cuts, including four people from the art department and one from marketing.
  • that Crain's reports that the job losses at DB total 22.
  • Big Random spokesman Stuart Applebaum reiterated that it's up to division heads to set head-count targets and make cuts (as I usually put it: "Bertelsmann doesn't care how they make budget, it just insists that they do.")
  • Little Random spokeswoman Carol Schneider said that Knopf and Little Random sub-rights departments were not merging, but was slipperier on the subject of the two layoffs the Observer reported earlier in the week.
So: some number of people have lost their jobs at Random, and more will come.


skottk said...

You know what I've realized from these reports of job losses is that I have no idea how many people it takes to run a publishing company. Is 6 people a lot to lose from Random House? I've always had this image of Random House with tens of thousands of employees, just because it's such a huge publisher.
Or is turnover of any kind just really rare?
I'm not trying to be callous, but the big companies I've worked for wouldn't even notice the terminations of 6 people, because they're getting rid of so many more than that.

Andrew Wheeler said...

skottk: Well, according to Hoovers, Random House as a whole -- and this is probably world-wide -- employs less than six thousand people.

Doubleday Broadway, the group that's losing at least six and maybe as many as twenty-two people, is probably no more than two hundred, and possibly quite less.

Publishing companies are actually pretty small -- there aren't that many jobs to begin with.

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