In what is perhaps the biggest surprise in publishing since the Covid-19 pandemic sent the U.S. economy into turmoil this spring, print unit sales saw a 2.8% increase in the first half of 2020, over the comparable period in 2019, at outlets that report to NPD BookScan. The number of copies sold was 322.1 million in the six-month period, up from 313.5 million in the first half of 2019. The increase was led by a combination of children’s nonfiction books aimed at helping parents educate and entertain their children following the closing of most schools in March, as well as a spike in sales of books on race relations and social justice following the killing of George Floyd by members of the Minneapolis police department in late May.
Investment firm KKR has completed its $1.62.billion acquisition of publisher Simon & Schuster from Paramount Global.
KKR is supporting Simon & Schuster’s employee ownership program. KKR has awarded billions of dollars of total equity value to over 60,000 non-senior management employees since 2011.
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