David Wan has been named prexy of publishing firm the Penguin Group, filling the void left by Michael Lynton, who officially ankled his post Wednesday as Penguin’s chairman and CEO to head up America Online’s international division.
Wan will lead the publishing operations of Penguin’s properties (all controlled by media conglom Pearson plc), including Penguin Classics, Viking, G.P. Putnam’s Sons, Berkeley Books and Puffin.
Reporting to Pearson’s chief exec Marjorie Scardino, Wan will work closely with the toppers of Penguin’s three key branches: Phyllis Grann of Penguin Putnam Inc., Anthony Forbes Washington of Penguin U.K. and Peter Field of Penguin Australia, New Zealand, South Africa and India.
Although Scardino was sorry to have to say farewell to Lynton, “he leaves the Penguin group in good creative and commercial health and is the first to acknowledge that he shares the credit with a highly talented management team,” she said.
She added that “led by David and his colleagues, (Penguin) is in great shape to build on its recent success and to be imaginative about how to invent the book business of the future.”
Most recently, Wan worked as Penguin’s exec VP and chief financial officer. Prior to that, he was prexy of Simon & Schuster’s U.S. school publishing division, acquired by Pearson in 1998. He has also held financial posts at Salomon Brothers, Paine Webber and PepsiCo.