April 15-30, 2004 Edition

Breaking News

Perseus to Undergo

Major Restructuring;

Westview Unit Closes

NEW YORK, NY/04/22/04—Perseus Books will downsize its staffs in New York, Cambridge, and Philadelphia and will close its offices in Westview, Colorado, according to David Steinberger, the company’s CEO of three months.

About 30 positions (roughly 15 percent of the overall staff) will be eliminated. Title output also will be cut from 600 to 500 titles, but the divisions will remain the same, including Basic Books, Da Capo, Public Affairs, and Running Press.

The academic publishing branch of Westview will be folded into Basic’s line under publisher Elizabeth Maguire, and the Westview trade unit will close. However, Perseus’ production and academic marketing offices will remain in operation in Colorado. About 17 positions will be eliminated in the move of Westview’s administrative, editorial and marketing operations to Basic Books.

The Counterpoint imprint, which now will focus on literary nonfiction, will no longer have a dedicated editor, with Dawn Sefarian leaving the company in June.

Steinberger said the changes stem from his “taking a fresh look at the company.” The original model, of shared-services but diverse editorial, “is sound,” he said. “It’s a question of how you can execute it.”

Steinberger, who had a reputation in his former post at HarperCollins for streamlining operations, took over at Perseus three months ago.