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EMC books another top publishing deal

Starting a new chapter (left to right) Andrew Welham (Octopus Publishing Group); Michael Pay (EMC); Charlotte Williams and Alastair Williams (both Summersdale); David Shelley (Hachette UK); Alison Goff (Octopus Publishing Group); Jonathan Grant (DMH Stallard); Pierre de Cacqueray (Hachette Livre)
1st Nov
Hachette Livre, through its company Octopus Publishing Group Limited, has acquired Summersdale Publishers Limited, in another publishing deal led by EMC Corporate Finance’s Michael Pay. Summersdale, based in Chichester, West Sussex, was bought by Octopus, part of the third largest publishers in the world, for an undisclosed sum. The deal took just eight weeks from initial contact to completion.After 27 years of independent publishing, Alastair Williams, Summersdale’s joint owner and Managing Director, said he was delighted that the company had been acquired by Octopus, and extremely proud that Summersdale will now sit alongside fine imprints such as Hamlyn, Mitchell Beazley and Cassell Illustrated.Summersdale , whose imprints also include Vie Books and Hucker & Pucker, produces more than 150 titles each year, specialising in the genres of travel writing, general non-fiction, health and well-being, and gift and humour. It was shortlisted in two categories of the 2017 British Book Awards with judges praising the firm for being “particularly adept at carving out sales in non-traditional retail channels.”Alastair Williams said: “I can’t speak highly enough of Michael Pay at EMC for his skill and professionalism during the transaction process. It’s been quite a journey, but he was with us every step of the way, and his involvement stretched way beyond our expectations. I couldn’t recommend him highly enough.“We now have the ideal home for our company and list. It allows us to retain our independent, entrepreneurial spirit and distinct personality, whilst enjoying the benefit of being part of a much larger group that will enable our lists to flourish and achieve greater scale and reach.”Hachette UK director David Shelley added: “It was great to work with Michael Pay of EMC on the Summersdale acquisition. He helped us reach completion within the desired timescale, and was always very approachable and collegiate. We are immensely excited about Summersdale and have high hopes for their future growth within Hachette.”For his part, EMC’s Michael Pay commented: “It was a real pleasure working with Alastair and the other shareholders on the sale of the company to Octopus, as well as being great to work once again alongside the DMH Stallard team, led by Jonathan Grant, and opposite Alison Goff and David Shelley, of Octopus, on another book publishing transaction.

“The deal follows a series of similar successful transactions in the industry and marks out EMC as a leader in the field of publishing mergers and acquisitions.”

EMC led the team advising Summersdale’s shareholders, supported by Jonathan Grant of DMH Stallard, with Paul Harding, of Clyde & Co acting for the buyers.

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