A word from the Chairman
Hachette Livre, a subsidiary of the French media giant Lagardère and a depository of part of France’s cultural heritage, is pushing beyond its historical borders, pursuing the adventure Louis Hachette began in 1826. Today, the Group brings together a broad spectrum of prestigious publishers covering the entire consumer book market. Three words can describe the Group: diversity, independence and profitability.
Hachette Livre is a constellation of publishers, in which literature and textbooks appear alongside travel guides and cookbooks. A shared focus on quality drives the Group’s imprints, which develop independently and cultivate their own identities. Independence is a vital necessity in publishing because it spawns creativity. Publishers perform best when they are close to their markets, their authors and their readers.
Diversity contributes to Hachette Livre’s financial soundness. Covering all editorial genres in French, English and Spanish offsets the impact of an economic downturn in one market by growth in another and makes the Group’s performance more predictable.
Hachette Livre is, as a result, well equipped to face new challenges such as the ambitions of internet giants, the consolidation of book retailing, or the advent of digital e-readers. In the face of such exciting changes, we must make sure that our publishers have the resources to meet the expectations of both readers and authors and to anticipate what the reading experience will be like in the future.
We have also embraced sustainable growth. Hachette Livre is one of the first publishing groups in the world to conduct carbon footprint assessments in all its major countries. Sustainable growth also means Hachette Livre promotes business models that can ensure a future for the publishing industry, with a particular focus on intellectual property rights and control of pricing, so that books see their true value recognized whatever the media and however they are brought to market. We also have to expand into new markets, especially emerging countries where books are bound to become a mass market entertainment product in the near future.
Such are the challenges we must face, and we will do so energized by our diversity and determined to leverage the full weight of our status as the world’s second largest consumer book publisher. Thus the Group’s publishers will pursue their adventures, some centuries old, by offering readers the best that writing has to offer, whether printed on paper or displayed on a screen.
Chairman and Chief Executive Officer