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Hachette Livre Group announces new management structure for its English language markets

Hachette UK CEO David Shelley to lead Hachette UK and Hachette Book Group
Hachette Book Group CEO Michael Pietsch takes on new role as Chairman

14 November 2023 – Hachette Livre announced today that they will create a new English language management structure for Hachette Book Group, to develop the longstanding excellent collaboration between Hachette Book Group (HBG) and Hachette UK (HUK).

Hachette UK CEO, David Shelley, will take on the CEO role for both Hachette Book Group and Hachette UK, reporting into Hachette Livre’s Deputy CEO, Stéphanie Ferran and Chairman and CEO of Hachette Livre, Arnaud Lagardère.
Michael Pietsch will retire from his role as HBG’s CEO and take on a new role as Chairman. Richard Kitson, Deputy CEO of HUK, will assume the role of Deputy CEO of both HBG and HUK. With these changes, HBG’s Chief Operating Officer Joe Mangan has decided to leave HBG and will retire. These leadership changes will be effective January 1, 2024.

Pietsch moves into the new role with decades of success as an editor, as Publisher at Little, Brown, and for the past eleven years as CEO of HBG. He has led HBG through organic expansion and the acquisitions of Perseus Books, Hyperion Adult, Workman Publishing, and others during a period of sustained growth and diversification. As editor and publisher he has championed many of the world’s best-selling writers, including David Baldacci, Michael Connelly, Malcolm Gladwell, Elin Hilderbrand, Stephenie Meyer, James Patterson, and J. K. Rowling, and worked with such literary luminaries as Ayad Akhtar, Tina Fey, Peter Guralnick, Min Jin Lee, Walter Mosley, Keith Richards. Stacy Schiff, David Sedaris, Donna Tartt, David Foster Wallace, and Malala Yousafzai. He has contributed significantly to the world of books, serving on the boards of PEN America, Poets & Writers, and the AAP.

Michael Pietsch said, “I’m proud of everything that all of us at Hachette Book Group have accomplished in the past decade, in close partnership with our authors—thriving, growing, and reinventing ourselves through complex and challenging times. Working even more closely with our wonderful colleagues at Hachette UK, under David Shelley’s excellent leadership, will make us an even stronger company, and I look forward to contributing to our future successes in every way possible in my new role.

Shelley has been CEO of Hachette UK for the past six years. Acquisitions during that time have included Welbeck, Paperblanks, Laurence King Publishing, John Catt, Summersdale and Short Books. In addition, he has overseen the launch of Hachette’s DEI strategy, Changing the Story.

David Shelley, Chief Executive Officer of Hachette UK, said: “I’m incredibly honoured to be given this opportunity to lead Hachette Book Group as well as Hachette UK and to work with Richard and the teams on both sides of the Atlantic to bring the two companies closer together – to help each learn from the other, and to continually reach new readers. Hachette Book Group publishes some of my favourite authors of all time and it’s hugely exciting to be able to get to know them and work on their books with the talented team in the US.

I’d like to pay special tribute to Michael as he has been a key figure for me over the years. As well as being a legendary editor, publisher and CEO, he is one of the most kind and thoughtful people in our industry. I am extremely pleased that he will be remaining as Chairman for the coming year and I look forward to working closely with him very much.”

Richard Kitson, currently Deputy CEO of Hachette UK will also take on a dual role as Deputy CEO Hachette Book Group and Hachette UK. Working alongside Shelley for the past six years, Kitson is Chair of Hachette UK’s subsidiary businesses, including Paperblanks and Hachette in Australia, New Zealand, India and Ireland. He also leads Hachette UK’s group functions, including HUK Digital, Rights and Audio, Legal, IT, Contracts, and Sales departments.

Joe Mangan, Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer, has led HBG’s operational teams since joining the company in February 2014, and is responsible for the company’s publishing operations, as well as its corporate strategy. He has led major enterprise projects that have been invaluable to HBG’s growth and success, including continually updating HBG’s enterprise systems, accelerating the efficiency of HBG’s warehouse, leading massive supply-chain improvements throughout pandemic printing crises, overseeing HBG’s important third-party distribution business, and guided our strategic initiatives.