|Parent company||Random House (Penguin Random House)|
|Founders||Nat Wartels, Bob Simon|
|Country of origin||United States|
|Headquarters location||New York City|
The Crown Publishing Group is a subsidiary of Penguin Random House that publishes across several categories including fiction, non-fiction, biography, autobiography and memoir, cooking, health, business, and lifestyle. Its imprints include Crown, Crown Archetype, Crown Business, Crown Forum, Hogarth, Three Rivers Press, Clarkson Potter, Potter Craft, Potter Style, Broadway Books, Broadway Paperbacks, Image (formerly Doubleday Religion), WaterBrook/Multnomah, Harmony Books, Rodale Books, Watson-Guptill, Amphoto Books, and Ten Speed Press. Formerly, the company also used the Bell Tower Press, Orion Books (unconnected to Orion Publishing in the United Kingdom), and related imprints and subsidiaries, such as Gramercy Publishing Company. However, these have now either been discontinued or transferred to other Random House units.
Crown authors include Jean Auel, Max Brooks, George W. Bush, Eitan Bernath, Deepak Chopra, Ann Coulter, Andrew Cuomo, Giada De Laurentiis, Will Ferrell (as fictional character Ron Burgundy), Gillian Flynn, Jim Gaffigan, Ina Garten, Mindy Kaling, Rachel Maddow, Jillian Michaels, Barack Obama, Michelle Obama, Theresa Rebeck, Mark Brennan Rosenberg, Judith Rossner, Rebecca Skloot, Suzanne Somers, Martha Stewart, Jonah Goldberg, Michael Jackson and many others.
The company was founded in 1933 as the Outlet Book Company by Nat Wartels and Bob Simon. Outlet Book Company began by featuring overstock and remaindered books, but soon moved into reprints of backlist, out-of-print, largely non-fiction titles, then into reprints of best-selling fiction and non-fiction, and eventually into original titles. It was under the Crown name that they began to publish original content in 1936.
Crown acquired bankrupt publishers such as Covici-Friede, Henkle-Yewdale, and Robert M. McBride in the 1940s. Other publishers acquired by Crown include Arcadia House; Howell, Soskin; and Julian Press.
Under the direction of Wartels, Alan Mirken, Joseph Reiner and others, Crown Books became one of the Outlet Book Company's lead imprints for original publishing which included such landmark fiction and non-fiction as Judith Krantz's Princess Daisy, Jean M. Auel's The Clan of the Cave Bear and Alex Comfort's The Joy of Sex in its early high-profile years.
Crown Publishing Group had its headquarters at 225 Park Avenue South in Midtown Manhattan, occupying 80,000 square feet (7,400 m2) of space. Random House received the space when it acquired the company. In 1990 Random House signaled intentions to sublease the space.
The Outlet Book Company's Crown Books remained an independent company until 1988 when it was purchased by Random House.
In 2008, the Doubleday Business/Currency, Doubleday Religion, and WaterBrook Multnomah divisions were moved from Doubleday to Crown when Doubleday was merged with Knopf. Doubleday Religion was replaced with the Catholic imprint Image in 2011.
In 2018, Crown was combined with Random House.
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Nat Wartels, founder, Crown Publishers, inducted for outstanding contributions to book publishing. Wartels' philosophy has been "to perceive what people in the marketplace want, and find the right author, art director and whoever else is needed to shape the book for the audience." With that, Wartels organized the bankrupt Outlet Book Company—which he bought for a few hundred dollars during the Depression—into highly successful Crown Publishing.
In 1933, inspired entrepreneurs Nat Wartels and Bob Simon founded a book company named Outlet Book Company. With the goal of providing quality books at inexpensive prices, Wartels and Simon used innovative techniques to create new markets for the books, bringing Outlet to the forefront of bargain book publishing. Outlet Book Company also introduced the concept of reprinting bestselling books to sell at bargain prices.
Mr. Mirken joined Crown in 1951. He developed Publishers Central Bureau, a leading mail-order book and video distributor, and the Outlet Book Company, which markets promotional books. Crown also publishes trade books, including those of the best-selling authors Judith Krantz, Jean Auel and William J. Caunitz.
Mr. Reiner originated the Bonanza division of Outlet, which brought books back into print in quality hardcover editions. These included Bruce Catton's American Heritage Picture History of the Civil War, the original water-color paintings by John James Audubon and works by such authors as Frank Lloyd Wright and P. G. Wodehouse.