The memoir publisher of Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex, has sided with the U.S. Department of Justice, which was against a major merger, urging publisher giant Penguin Random House to buy competitor Simon & Schuster. It faced a major setback as a federal judge blocked it.
The deal, worth $2.2 billion, was announced in November 2020 and would have included two of America’s five largest publishers.
U.S. District Court Judge Florence Pang said in her ruling that the government was persuasive that the merger would “substantially” reduce competition “in the market for the U.S. publishing rights to the anticipated top-selling books.” He said he showed it with
Pang said the full reason for the decision will be issued under seal as it relies on confidential company information.
Penguin Random House, a subsidiary of Germany’s Bertelsmann Group, has 10,000 employees worldwide, publishes about 15,000 books a year, and dominates the US industry.
Owned by Paramount, Simon & Schuster is the fourth largest of America’s “Big 5” publishers, which includes HarperCollins, Hachette Book Group USA and Macmillan Publishers.
Notable authors from Simon & Schuster include Stephen King and Doris Kearns Goodwin, Barack and Michelle Obama, and John Grisham have books published by Penguin Random House.
We are also preparing to release Prince Harry’s memoir in early 2023. (Web Desk/AFP)