Who is the publisher who makes the best impression?

Market Leaders Pick Their Market Leader

Richard Charkin

Chief Executive,

Macmillan Ltd

One man who has my admiration in the publishing industry is Vitek Tracz of Current Science Group because he builds rather than milks and is prepared to risk his own money on a venture or innovation. Also because he is a believer in high- quality design, editorial and production and, most importantly, because he respects the authors he publishes. Of course, you can be a decent publisher without any of these skills, but to be a market leader they are essential.

Anthony Forbes Watson

Chief Executive,

Penguin UK

There are several qualities a successful publisher must combine. They should have a passion for books. They must have vision, imagination, team leadership and an ability to work with both creative and commercial acumen. The combination of all these aspects is the fundamental challenge of publishing. People who have gone some way in doing this are Peter Kindersley of Dorling Kindersley becausePeter had a big idea he transformed into reality. He created a look and a design that was successfully translated around the world. His triumph was that of successfully creating a brand identity. Then there's Paul Scherer who recently retired from Transworld. He is an awesome character and the successful builder of a top-quality team - thanks to him their success spanned two decades. And third, I am impressed by Tim Hely Hutchinson of Hodder Headline and his skilful advocacy of the importance to authors of territorial rights.

Amanda Ridout

Managing Director,

Headline Book Publishing

The first person who springs to mind as an impressive publishing figure is Anthony Forbes Watson for turning Penguin around. He with Helen Fraser managed to make the most potent brand in the world a success again. Victoria Barnsley of Fourth Estate is also an impressive figure. She has made a small company extremely successful in terms of publishing books and getting them on to best-sellers lists. She also helped to start and promote the current vogue for the quirky narrative non-fiction book such as Longitude and A Perfect Storm. She inspired the market. Victoria has an eye for quality and a determination to preserve that; Anthony had the toughness to turn a company around.

Benjamin Glazebrook

Chairman,

Constable

I admire Anthony Cheetham of Orion for his ability to start a publishing business, make a success of it, sell it and then do the same again. He has done this with the imprints Century and Orion and in doing so has shown remarkable entrepreneurial talent.

Peter Kindersley

Chairman,

Dorling Kindersley Plc

It may seem a strange choice as the person I'm going to choose is chief executive of a media group but she is a publisher by trade and, in my opinion has shown great innovation in the way she has directed the publishing industry. My market leader is Marjorie Scardino of the Pearson Group. She's a risk-taker but it is risk-taking that builds business. She is building a knowledge business which is a rapidly expanding area of the publishing arena. And she's going global with the business - in fact, she's going for a Microsoft type of global lockout. It's an exciting idea and I admire her boldness of perspective.

Nigel Newton

Chief Executive,

Bloomsbury Publishing Plc

The challenge of whittling down any large list to a small one is exacerbated by the fact that I admire and have learnt a great deal from many people in this industry, past and present. I would certainly include my close colleague Liz Calder, editor- in-chief of Bloomsbury Publishing, among them with her tremendous style, flair and commitment in any list. I would also pick out Anthony Cheetham of Orion Books who has always been more of an inspiration to me than he could probably be aware His example with Century led to my feeling that starting a new publishing venture would be an exciting thing to do. I also admire Anthony's ability to spot publishing trends quickly and take full advantage of them by exploiting them before other people do. He is also a very agreeable person. William Armstrong of Macmillan was the Miss Jean Brodie of my publishing career. Not only was he mad enough to hire me at Sidgwick and Jackson in 1976 but also he showed me the vital skill in non-fiction publishing of putting a great author together with a great idea for a subject conceived by the publisher. He has an exceptional gift for this. He is also terribly well connected in world publishing and showed how you could make international networking (something Liz Calder is brilliant at as well) a huge strength of your approach to book publishing. Finally Craig Bartholomew of Microsoft is an American software publisher with a determination not to mimic the past but to create the works of the future. In the four years I have collaborated with him on Bloomsbury's biggest venture to date, the Encarta World English Dictionary, I have been impressed throughout by his combination of vision on the one hand, and huge efficiency in running his day-to-day business life and marshalling the large forces around him and reporting to him at Microsoft. He spends a lot of time in aeroplanes but things still get done and he manages to be a well-balanced and warm human being on top of that.

David Hogg

Managing Director,

Sutton Publishing

I thoroughly admire the work of Bloomsbury's chief executive, Nigel Newton. He took a small company and has built it up into a substantial publishing concern. He has established it as a player and doing that sort of thing in the UK is uncommon. I should also mention Victoria Barnsley of Fourth Estate. Her independent business is of a size not big in proportion to its actual size and this is thanks to her brilliant eye and feel for books.

Nick Perren

Managing Director,

John Murray (Publishers)

Book publishing is essentially a team business and the houses I particularly admire tend to be the independent ones. I admire publishers who have managed to run consistently successful independent publishing companies. The men who get my votes are Nigel Newton of Bloomsbury and Tim Hely Hutchinson of Hodder Headline. They have done terrific jobs for their respective companies in different ways. But not every company can be an independent and I also respect much of the work done by the offshoots of US or multinational companies. These include Philippa Harrison of Little, Brown, Simon Master of Random House and Mark Barty-King and the whole team at Transworld.

Eddie Bell

Chief Executive,

HarperCollins

One chap in publishing who I thoroughly admire is Ernest Hecht. He runs a publishing company called Souvenir Press and is the last of the great publishers. He's an eccentric character who runs a very successful independent house, which can publish a book on cricket one minute and on diets the next. He has very broad-based experience in the industry, which is backed up with sound commercial acumen. He's a risk-taker and he loves his writers - certain publishers, of course, do not love their writers. Ernest does. And that you can't really do without.

Mark Barty-King

Managing Director,

Transworld Publishers

It seems cheeky, but I'd really like to mention the team at Transworld which I think is surely one of the most effective in the business. Barry Hempstead and Patrick Janson-Smith have ensured that year after year we not only publish good books but also make a healthy profit doing so. Alan Giles is also a great man in publishing. He is now at HMV Media and was formerly at Waterstone's. I choose him because he brings clarity of purpose to everything he does and communicates it clearly. He's one of the people I most admire in the business. I'd also like to mention Christopher MacLehose of Harvill publishers because he's ploughing his own furrow in publishing, and he maintains his own extraordinarily high standards with great success.

Interviews by

Sally Chatterton

PROMOTED VIDEO
Sport
Getty
News
Women have been desperate to possess dimples like Cheryl Cole's
people Cole has secretly married French boyfriend Jean-Bernard Fernandez-Versini after just three months.
Arts and Entertainment
AKB48 perform during one of their daily concerts at Tokyo’s Akihabara theatre
musicJapan's AKB48 are one of the world’s most-successful pop acts
News
Ian Thorpe has thanked his supporters after the athlete said in an interview that he is gay
people
News
The headstone of jazz great Miles Davis at Woodlawn Cemetery in New York
news
Arts and Entertainment
Brendan O'Carroll has brought out his female alter-ego Agnes Brown for Mrs Brown's Boys D'Movie
filmComedy holds its place at top of the UK box office
News
newsBear sweltering in zoo that reaches temperatures of 40 degrees
Arts and Entertainment
Professor Kathy Willis will showcase plants from the Royal Botanic Gardens at Kew
radioPlants: From Roots to Riches has been two years in the making
News
ebookA unique anthology of reporting and analysis of a crucial period of history
Extras
indybestThe tastiest creations for children’s parties this summer
Arts and Entertainment
TV The follow-up documentary that has got locals worried
Arts and Entertainment
Paolo Nutini performs at T in the Park
music
Life and Style
Swimsuit, £245, by Agent Provocateur
fashion

Diving in at the deep end is no excuse for shirking the style stakes

Arts and Entertainment
Eminem's daughter Hailie has graduated from high school
music
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs Money & Business

HR Advisor - 6 months FTC Wimbledon, SW London

£35000 - £40000 per annum + Benefits: Ashdown Group: HR Advisor - 6 Months Fix...

Information Security Manager (ISO 27001, Accreditation, ITIL)

£70000 per annum: Harrington Starr: Information Security Manager (ISO 27001, A...

Biztalk - outstanding opportunity

£75000 - £85000 per annum + ex bens: Deerfoot IT Resources Limited: Biztalk Te...

Trade Desk Specialist (FIX, Linux, Windows, Network Security)

£60000 per annum: Harrington Starr: Trade Desk Specialist (FIX, Linux, Windows...

Day In a Page

Super Mario crushes the Messi dream as Germany win the 2014 World Cup in Brazil

Super Mario crushes the Messi dream

Germany win the 2014 World Cup in Brazil
Saharan remains may be evidence of the first race war, 13,000 years ago

The first race war, 13,000 years ago?

Saharan remains may be evidence of oldest large-scale armed conflict
Scientists find early warning system for Alzheimer’s

Scientists find early warning system for Alzheimer’s

Researchers hope eye tests can spot ‘biomarkers’ of the disease
Sex, controversy and schoolgirl schtick

Meet Japan's AKB48

Pop, sex and schoolgirl schtick make for controversial success
In pictures: Breathtaking results of this weekend's 'supermoon'

Weekend's 'supermoon' in pictures

The moon appeared bigger and brighter at the weekend
Iraq crisis: How Saudi Arabia helped Isis take over the north of the country

How Saudi Arabia helped Isis take over northern Iraq

A speech by an ex-MI6 boss hints at a plan going back over a decade. In some areas, being Shia is akin to being a Jew in Nazi Germany, says Patrick Cockburn
The evolution of Andy Serkis: First Gollum, then King Kong - now the actor is swinging through the trees in Dawn of the Planet of the Apes

The evolution of Andy Serkis

First Gollum, then King Kong - now the actor is swinging through the trees in Dawn of the Planet of the Apes
You thought 'Benefits Street' was controversial: Follow-up documentary 'Immigrant Street' has got locals worried

You thought 'Benefits Street' was controversial...

Follow-up documentary 'Immigrant Street' has got locals worried
Refugee children from Central America let down by Washington's high ideals

Refugee children let down by Washington's high ideals

Democrats and Republicans refuse to set aside their differences to cope with the influx of desperate Central Americas, says Rupert Cornwell
Children's books are too white, says Laureate

Children's books are too white, says Laureate

Malorie Blackman appeals for a better ethnic mix of authors and characters and the illustrator Quentin Blake comes to the rescue
Blackest is the new black: Scientists have developed a material so dark that you can't see it...

Blackest is the new black

Scientists have developed a material so dark that you can't see it...
Matthew Barzun: America's diplomatic dude

Matthew Barzun: America's diplomatic dude

The US Ambassador to London holds 'jeans and beer' gigs at his official residence – it's all part of the job, he tells Chris Green
Meet the Quantified Selfers: From heart rates to happiness, there is little this fast-growing, self-tracking community won't monitor

Meet the 'Quantified Selfers'

From heart rates to happiness, there is little this fast-growing, self-tracking community won't monitor
Madani Younis: Five-star reviews are just the opening act for British theatre's first non-white artistic director

Five-star reviews are just the opening act for British theatre's first non-white artistic director

Madani Younis wants the neighbourhood to follow his work as closely as his audiences do
Mrs Brown and her boys: are they having a laugh?

Mrs Brown and her boys: are they having a laugh?

When it comes to national stereotyping, the Irish – among others – know it can pay to play up to outsiders' expectations, says DJ Taylor