MAIN NEWS HEADLINES
June 12 – June 19, 2008 Edition
Into New Structure
NASHVILLE/6/12/08–John Ingram, Chairman of the Ingram Content Companies, announced last Thursday that the company would fold the leading print-on-demand publisher, Lightning Source, Inc. into its main book business to create Ingram Lightning Group. Ingram said the new structure would “provide seamless coordination among the Ingram businesses that serve publishers, librarians, booksellers and other creators and consumers of printed content throughout the industry.
The new entity, to be headed by David (Skip) Prichard, president and CEO, will bring Lightning Source together with the companies now comprising Ingram Book Group.
Authorlink speculates that the move has been influenced by a growing strain between Lightning Source and print-on-demand competitor BookSurge, owned by Amazon.com, which looks as if it wants to take over the digital printing market. Amazon now faces a class action lawsuit brought by Booklocker in behalf of more than 1,000 publishers claiming Amazon’s new policies force publishers and authors to use only BookSurge printing facilities or limit, if not lose, their ability to sell books on Amazon.
In announcing the new Ingram structure, Mr. Ingram said: “Ingram Book Group and Lightning Source together provide a broad range of physical and digital services to many important players across the book industry, and this consolidation will help us serve the book industry better and faster.”
“When Lightning Source was established 11 years ago, it was important to carve out a separate niche for purposes of clarity in the marketplace. Today, Lightning is widely recognized and, in fact, is known as ‘the authority’ in print on demand technology and service. Along the way, we have also learned how important it is for Lightning and Ingram Book to coordinate their work very closely.
“Consolidating our efforts now is the next logical step, and this will allow us to provide a more coordinated offering for our customers,” he said. “This is part of our continuing effort to have our content companies work more nimbly in service to all of our partners and customers, and we think this will allow us to serve them better, faster, and with more flexibility.”
Lightning’s President and CEO J. Kirby Best, after leading Lightning Source for nearly six years, will move on to other challenges after helping with the transition.
“I am proud of what we’ve accomplished during my tenure at Lightning Source, and I feel the company is well positioned now to move to the next level under Skip’s leadership,”
Mr. Best said.
As part of this transition, David Taylor, who has been Lightning’s Senior Vice President of Global Sales and Managing Director of Lightning Source UK, will become President of Lightning Source within the new Ingram Lightning Group structure, reporting to Mr. Prichard.
The organizational change will not affect operations or staffing at any of the existing distribution centers of Ingram Book nor at Lightning Source’s book manufacturing facilities.
“Lightning has been an astonishing success story since 1997,” Mr. Prichard commented. “I am delighted to be given the opportunity to take Lightning to the next stage of its development within this new organization. We have some exciting plans, both domestically and internationally, and we see considerable growth in many areas for our combined physical content offerings.”
Ingram Lightning Group is an Ingram Content company. Together with Ingram Digital, the Ingram Content Companies provide a broad range of physical and digital services to the book industry. Ingram Lightning Group is a leading wholesaler of trade books, spoken audio, magazines, and a leading provider of demand-driven printing solutions for publishers. Ingram provides immediate access to the largest selection of books and book-related products in the industry. The operating units in the Group are Ingram Book Company, Lightning Source Inc., Ingram Periodicals Inc., Ingram International Inc., Ingram Library Services Inc., Spring Arbor Distributors Inc., Ingram Publisher Services Inc., Tennessee Book Company LLC, and Coutts Information Services. For more information, visit www.ingrambook.com or www.lightningsource.com