After seven years as CEO of Hachette Book Group, David Young will be leaving the post to return to the UK. He is being replaced by Michael Pietsch, currently the publisher of Little, Brown and Company, a division of Hachette, effective April 1, 2013. Hachette also promoted chief operating officer Ken Michaels to the role of president and chief operating officer.
Pietsch, 55, comes from the editorial side of publishing. He got his start in 1979 as an editor at Charles Scribner & Sons, editing fiction, including Ernest Hemingway’s posthumous memoir, The Dangerous Summer. In 1985, he moved to Crown Publishing, where he edited such authors as Chuck Berry, Martin Amis and Mark Leyner. Pietsch joined Little Brown in 1991 and rose to the rank of editor-in-chief by 1998. He became the company’s publisher in 2001.
Among his achievements are the acquisition and editing of James Patterson as well as working with David Foster Wallace on Infinite Jest. Pietsch graduated from Harvard.
While Young, 61, is stepping down as CEO, he will stay on as chairman of the Hachette Book Group as well as taking on additional responsibilities with the company in the UK. On June 1, 2013, Young will becoming the deputy chief executive of Hachette UK and CEO of the Orion Publishing Group, a division of Hachette UK. He will report to the Hachette UK CEO Tim Hely Hutchinson. The current deputy CEO and Orion CEO, Peter Roche, will be retiring in June 2013.
Young will also chair Hachette Livre’s chief operating officers’ council and report to Hachette Livre chairman Arnaud Nourry.
Young got his start in publishing in 1970 as a production manager at publisher Thorsons, the Mind, Body and Spirit and rose to the rank of managing director by 1980. In 1989, when HarperCollins acquired Thorsons, he was appointed to the HarperCollins board and eventually become divisional managing director of the HarperCollins trade division in 1993.
Young joined Little, Brown as managing director in 1996. He became CEO of Little, Brown in 2000 and then CEO of Hachette Book Group in 2006.
Michaels became president and chief operating officer today, adding the former title to the latter, which he has held since 2009. Michaels, 53, earned his promotion by helping transform Hachette Book Group’s systems and infrastructure, according to a company spokesperson.