Last updated: February 06. 2014 7:05PM - 5615 Views
By - smocarsky@civitasmedia.com

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NEW YORK, N.Y. — Penguin Random House will close two of its distribution and fulfillment centers — one of them in Pittston — beginning next February.

Stuart Applebaum, spokesman for the global trade book publisher, said the company never discloses the number of employees in any of its divisions or departments, so it’s unknown how many employees will be affected locally.

The decision to close the Pittston facility as well as one in Kirkwood, N.Y., stems from the company’s decision to “unify and consolidate distribution and fulfillment for all its publishers’ physical book titles,” currently shipped from four operations centers, into two facilities in Westminster, Md., and Crawfordsville, Ind.

Applebaum said the company does not have an exact number of positions that will be eliminated through attrition, but “there will be relocation opportunities for some of the positions, and we hope our people will take us up on them.”

The Pittston facility, located on Commerce Boulevard, was built in the early 1980s and has been owned by Penguin or its predecessor since the early 1990s, Applebaum said.

The company said its goal with its distribution center decision is “threefold: to increase our competitive advantage in the marketplace, to grow the profitability of our titles for our retailers, and to bring better service to our authors than ever before.”

“The impact on our colleagues who will be leaving because of this decision is extremely painful and difficult. Regrettably, it is just not logistically or financially feasible to integrate the Kirkwood and Pittston facilities,” Markus Dohle, CEO, Penguin Random House, and Madeline McIntosh, U.S. President and Chief Operating Officer, said in a news release.

Dohle and McIntosh said the decision “does not lessen our concern for those employees who will be affected by next year’s closings. We are extremely grateful for their many extensive contributions to Penguin’s success, and we will be discussing with them the effects of the consolidation, including transitional and post-closing support to help them through this time.”

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