Investors Back Jane Friedman’s New Company

August 27, 2009
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Aug 27 – Sept 3, 2009 Edition Investors Back Jane Friedman’s New Company

NEW YORK, NY (AUTHORLINK NEWS, August 25, 2009)—Jane Friedman, the former CEO of HarperCollins Worldwide, has received $3 million in funding for her new company OpenRoad Integrated Media, established earlier this year. The funding is led by Bay Area Holdings, a fund affiliated with Kohlberg Ventures. PaidContent.org describes the venture as “a still-stealth New York-based eBooks marketing and publishing startup.”

The company also involves film producer Jeff Sharp (“Boys Don’t Cry”) as an executive officer. Sharp, an independent movie producer, did not renew a partnership agreement with HarperCollins to develop HC titles into films through a unit called Sharp Independent. OpenRoad bills itself as beyond books into “integrated media.” But the company has not yet said exactly what that will mean. Friedman has reportedly been seen at various film festivals in recent months.

Friedman recently appeared in a video interview at Viddler.com with Larry Kirshbaum, LJK Literary Management, the former CEO of Time-Warner Book Group. In that session she said it would be difficult for large publishers who are hurting badly to reinvent themselves. “There’s too much history,” she said, indicating that smaller, newer companies may have a better shot at digital publishing. Friedman has long been an advocate of multimedia and even founded the Random House audio books division.

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