Random House has a new CEO, Markus Dohle (who previously worked for a printing company owned by corporate owner Bertelsmann AG), and he's finally made the big changes people have been expecting for months, reports Leon Neyfakh at the New York Observer. Dohle just released a "jaw-dropping memo" that was decidedly un-cheery—as well as "effective immediately." The memo is too hard to read in its corporatespeak ("created a plan for our future that aligns existing strengths and publishing affinities and fosters teamwork throughout the company") so we will translate:
Basically Random House's many imprints, such as Nan A. Talese and Spiegel & Grau, will be moved around to its other divisions (Knopf, Crown, Random House group, etc), but the Bantam and Doubleday divisions will be no more. Bantam and Doubleday publishers, Irwyn Applebaum and Steve Rubin, are "step[ping] down" and their imprints will be farmed out/consolidated as well. In short: this "massive reorganization" is a big deal and they need to save cash, thus spooking everyone who works there. "I've never seen so many smokers outside the building at one time before," says a tipster. "Everyone is giving each other the pity look."