Publishing group

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A publishing group is an association of individual publishers (mostly book or newspaper publishers ), to which an umbrella company (sometimes referred to as a publishing house ) is often superordinate.


The German publishing landscape has been characterized by concentration movements since the second half of the 20th century. This compression has increased over the past two decades; In 2005, one hundred of the nearly two thousand publishers in Germany generated around 65 percent of the industry's turnover, with the publishing groups being divided into the categories of general- interest and specialist publishers . The industry giant Bertelsmann ranks first among the public publishers. It holds the top position in this sector worldwide and achieved a total of 15.4 billion euros in 2009. In 1998 Bertelsmann acquired the US publishing group Random House , making it the largest publisher for English-language literature . The second German market leader in this area is the Georg von Holtzbrinck publishing group , which achieved a turnover of 2.56 billion euros in 2008.

The large and medium-sized book publishers are increasingly trying to enter into international partnerships. Expansion movements are particularly important for the branch of specialist publishers, and especially for science publishers , as the export of German-language academic books is steadily declining. Therefore the companies try to produce the respective literature directly or additionally in English. Springer Science + Business Media takes the top position in Germany with an annual turnover of 880 million euros (2009), followed by the WEKA publishing group with 210 million euros (2008).

Most book publishers in Germany, however, are still medium-sized companies .

Large German publishing groups


  • Reinhard Wittmann: An overview of the history of the German book trade. 2nd Edition. Beck, Munich 1999, ISBN 3-406-42104-0 , pp. 423-429.

Individual evidence