Jonathan Ball Publishers buys Icon Books

Jonathan Ball Publishers, a division of South African media group Media24, has acquired Icon Books Ltd for an undisclosed sum and will take management control on 1 April.

Eugene Ashton, CEO of Jonathan Ball Publishers, is appointed Chairman of Icon Books and Icon’s Managing Director Philip Cotterell becomes CEO.

All staff are being retained and there is a planned expansion programme that will be phased in over the coming years.

Eugene Ashton said: ‘Jonathan Ball Publishers has for many years wanted to expand our publishing and grow into markets beyond southern Africa. Icon Books is a company that we have long admired – they publish superb books with a tremendous independent character and are an ideal fit.

‘The business is well managed and has a proud track record. I look forward to working with the team and publishing many more books in the future.’

In turn, Philip Cotterell said, ‘Having worked with Jonathan Ball Publishers as Icon’s South African agent for a number of years, we know each other well and we are delighted that Icon/Jonathan Ball Publishers has the firm foundation to substantially build on the achievements of recent years.’

Icon Books was founded in 1991. An established publisher of upmarket nonfiction, the company is part of the Independent Alliance and publishes throughout the world. Leading authors include Mark Forsyth, Helen Russell, Graham Allcott and Cordelia Fine, and recent hits have included Billion Dollar Spy by David E Hoffman, 100 Years of Leeds United by Daniel Chapman, and MJ Barker and Jules Scheele’s Queer: A Graphic History. Icon also publishes the long-running Introducing series of graphic guides.

Jonathan Ball Publishers was started in 1976 and is a leading publisher and distributor of English general books in South Africa. Jonathan Ball Publishers specialises in South African history, politics and current affairs. Jonathan Ball Publishers also acts as agents for British and American publishers, marketing and distributing books on their behalf in southern Africa.

Categories Fiction International South Africa

Tags Book Publishing Eugene Ashton Icon Books Jonathan Ball Publishers News Philip Cotterell Publishing

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