Press release

Philip Hoffman Named Chairman of Penguin Random House, Succeeding John Makinson

news-company-default-thumb-300x150 (1)NEW YORK, NY (November 15, 2016) — Philip Hoffman, former Chief Corporate Finance and Strategic Development Officer at Pearson PLC, has been named Chairman of Penguin Random House, effective January 1, 2017, it was announced today by the company’s Board of Directors. He succeeds John Makinson, who will have served as the company’s Chairman for nearly three-and-a-half years when he retires from the position on December 31, 2016 at the conclusion of a 15-year career with Penguin and Penguin Random House.  


Penguin Random House is the world’s largest trade book publisher. The company, led by CEO Markus Dohle, was formed on July 1, 2013, with the merger of Penguin and Random House by Bertelsmann and Pearson, who own 53 percent and 47 percent, respectively. Mr. Hoffman has served on the Penguin Random House Board of Directors since the company’s inception and has been Chairman of the Audit Committee during that time. Until his retirement earlier this year, he held leadership positions for Penguin and Pearson for the past 27 years, among them, Chairman and CEO of the Learning Network; President, Pearson Inc; Chief Financial and Chief Administrative Officer of the Penguin Group; and Chief Financial Officer, Pearson Inc. He was a member of the Pearson PLC Executive Committee since 2003. Mr. Hoffman also currently serves on the Board of Directors of the GED Testing Service. He has also held board positions at The Economist Group, MarketWatch, and Interactive Data Corporation. Thomas Rabe, Chairman and CEO of Bertelsmann, said, “I congratulate Philip Hoffman on his appointment as the new Chairman of Penguin Random House. From the beginning, he has closely supported Penguin Random House’s development as an equally expert and responsible advisor. I look forward to working even more intensively with him in the future. “At the same time, I would like to sincerely thank John Makinson for his outstanding contribution to the Penguin Random House success story over the past few years. The smooth integration of the two companies, the ongoing development of Penguin Random House, and many of the company’s successes would have been inconceivable without him.” John Fallon, CEO of Pearson said, “Philip Hoffman has played a leading role in developing both Pearson and Penguin’s businesses over the past two decades.  As Chairman, his strategic insights, commercial expertise, and industry knowledge will serve Penguin Random House extremely well. “John Makinson spent a decade leading the creative and commercial resurgence of Penguin and the last four years ensuring the tie up with Random House builds on that success. In an engagement with Pearson that dates back to 1979, John has proved himself to be a highly talented and inspirational colleague for all seasons -- distinguished journalist, finance director, publishing executive and leader, highly regarded by his colleagues and industry peers. We thank him for all his work on Pearson's behalf and wish him every future success." Philip Hoffman said, “I am delighted to be taking on the role of Chairman of Penguin Random House, continuing the outstanding Board leadership begun by my colleague and friend John Makinson. Since my days at Penguin, book publishing has always been close to my heart. As a member of the Penguin Random House Board these past three years, I have really enjoyed working with Markus Dohle and his team, and I look forward to plugging in more deeply with them to help drive the continued success of this amazing company.” The Penguin Random House Board of Directors currently comprises John Makinson, Chairman, Penguin Random House; Markus Dohle, CEO, Penguin Random House; Milena Alberti, CFO, Penguin Random House; John Fallon, CEO, Pearson PLC; Thomas Götz, General Counsel and Head of Legal Department, Bertelsmann; Bernd Hirsch, Chief Financial Officer, Bertelsmann; Philip Hoffman, former Chief Corporate Finance and Strategic Development Officer, Pearson PLC; Thomas Rabe, Chairman and CEO, Bertelsmann; Baroness Rebuck, DBE, Chair Penguin Random House U.K. Board; Emmanuel Roman, CEO, Pacific Investment Management Co.; Coram Williams, CFO, Pearson PLC; and Lauren Zalaznick, Media Executive.

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About Penguin Random House

Penguin Random House, the world’s largest trade book publisher, is dedicated to its mission of nourishing a universal passion for reading by connecting authors and their writing with readers everywhere. The company, which employs more than 10,000 people globally, was formed on July 1, 2013, by Bertelsmann and Pearson, who own 53 percent and 47 percent, respectively. With nearly 250 independent imprints and brands on five continents, Penguin Random House comprises adult and children’s fiction and nonfiction print and digital trade book publishing businesses in more than 20 countries worldwide, including the U.S., U.K., Canada, Australia, New Zealand, China, India, South Africa, Spain, Mexico, Argentina, Colombia, Chile, Peru, Portugal, and Uruguay. With over 15,000 new titles, and close to 800 million print, audio and eBooks sold annually, Penguin Random House’s publishing lists include more than 60 Nobel Prize laureates and hundreds of the world’s most widely read authors.