Two West Coast Distributors Form Bookselling Behemoth

1.18.02

The big just got bigger in the book distribution industry.

Advanced Marketing Services- the San Diego-based wholesale distributor of general interest and computer and business books to membership warehouse clubs like Costco and Sam's Club, and other specialty retailers such as Office Depot- announced on January 17 that it will acquire Publishers Group West, the largest distributor of independent publishers in North America, for about $38 million.

Publishers Group West, based in Berkeley, is the distributor of over 150 independent publishers, including Four Walls Eight Windows, Grove/Atlantic, Milkweed Editions, and Seven Stories Press. The companies will share warehouses but retain separate headquarters.

The acquisition will allow AMS to expand its distribution business while PGW's clients gain access to the marketing resources of AMS.