June 18, 2013
Two more staffers leave Granta
by Alex Shephard
The “shit storm” continues.
Yesterday, The Bookseller reported that two more Granta employees, sales and marketing director Brigid Macleod and sales manager Sharon Murphy, would be leaving the company and that British publisher Faber & Faber would be “taking on the publisher’s UK and international sales.” Macleod and Murphy were both longtime employees of Granta—Macleod has worked for the company for seven years, while Murphy has been with Granta for five.
In a statement, Granta publisher Sigrid Rausing said: “We are very sorry to lose Brigid and Sharon who did a wonderful job selling Granta’s books. Extending our sales relationship with Faber, however, makes every sense at this point, and we look forward to working more closely with them in the future.”
Rausing took over “full operational and executive control of Granta Publications” last month, when she asserted that “the economic realities of small imprint publishing today has made it obvious that we need the magazine and books to be a single entity to exploit the synergy between them.” It’s unclear whether the decision to part ways with Macleod and Murphy was their own, or if it was made by Granta for financial reasons.
According to The Bookseller:
Faber sales and marketing director Will Atkinson said the publisher had been working with Granta for some time within the Independent Alliance and that it was therefore a “natural step” to take on Granta‘s full sales and distribution. “We are delighted to be working even more closely with such an esteemed publisher,” he said.
Granta’s Katie Hayward and Iain Chapple “will take on responsibility for handling the flow of information to Faber.” Hayward and Chapple also serve as evidence that people still work for Granta, after a spate of high profile departures.
By my count, seven staffers have left Granta in the past two months: editor John Freeman, deputy editor Ellah Allfrey, art director Michael Salu, associate editor Patrick Ryan, Granta Books executive publisher Philip Gwyn Jones, and now Macleod and Murphy. Granta lost six staffers under seemingly similar circumstances in 2009.
Alex Shephard is the director of digital media for Melville House, and a former bookseller.