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10.01.2019 – 10:51

Thalia Bücher GmbH

Book Trade Standing Shoulder to Shoulder: Mayersche and Thalia merge to become Europe´s leading book retailer

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- The combination of 55 Mayersche bookstores in North Rhine-Westphalia and Rhineland-Palatinate and the 300 Thalia stores in the German speaking world now gives us Europe's leading family-led bookseller

- Commitment to reading: More than 200 years of Mayersche and 100 years of Thalia

- Regional Bookselling know-how supplements innovative omni-channel-strategy

Aachen/Hagen 10th January 2019. The Mayersche book traders with Best Of Books (B.O.B) and Thalia are merging. The combination of 55 Mayersche bookstores in North Rine-Westphalia and Rhineland-Palatinate and the 300 Thalia stores in the German speaking world, as well as Best Of Books (B.O.B) now gives us Europe's leading family-led bookseller.

"Both companies will learn from each other and the strengths of both companies will be of great benefit to the customer", explained Dr. Hartmut Falter owner and CEO of the tradition-steeped Mayersche booksellers and future second managing partner at Thalia. The expertise of Mayersche and Thalia will bring about a new and complementary level of quality." The Head Office in Aachen will continue to be led by the Falter family.

The changing environment in book retailing requires future-orientated concepts and alliances. "Thalia and Mayersche are merging into an innovative bookseller that will not only be a major player in the market, but also, in international comparison, the most successful omni-channel bookselling business", says Michael Busch, CEO and executive partner of Thalia. The merger also sends out a clear message to the sector. Busch: "We're banking on stable alliances and partnerships, we, in the German book trade are more successful when we act together."

The Mayersche company along with subsidiary B.O.B and Thalia will be integrated under company law. The previous Thalia shareholders, made up of the Herder, Kreke, Busch and Göritz families will be joined by the Falter family. Hartmut Falter will be second managing partner and a member of Thalia's management group. In his role he will forge ahead with the integration and further development of both companies and will personally lead the Mayersche KG along with Best Of Books. Additionally Hartmut Falter will take on responsibility for the area of corporate development. The administrative location on Matthiashofstraße in Aachen is being retained and will take on service responsibilities.

Hartmut Falter emphasises that: "Mayersche und Thalia have the same approach to the book trade and share the same values. Mayersche and Thalia stand for an unfettered love of books. In the new partnership, we want to learn from each other in order to become more innovative and more attractive for our customers". In future the company will drive ahead in the online-business. This will guarantee wider reach and greater market strength in the competition with other international online retailers.

It is Thalia's view that the amalgamation with Mayersche is a consequence of the brand relaunch in September 2018. The objective of this comprehensive renewal is to reinforce the relevance of books and inspirational content among the public. Now more than ever, bookshops, equipped with a carefully selected and enterprising range, must become a place of retreat along with the right atmosphere for immersing in stories. Personalised advice from qualified and committed staff remains, in the eye of the customer, the essential difference from online retail.

Both entities intend to fuse their respective skills in order to bring about a complementary and new level of quality for the customer. Best Of Books, the leading Shop System Operator stands for the diversification skill of the Mayersche. The company has been opening up new sales channels in auxiliary markets such as self-service department stores, consumer markets, supermarkets and drug stores for over fifteen years. Thalia's strengths lie among others in the system advantages and in its omni-channel-expertise. A 100% focus on customer benefit has brought about new services which make purchasing with Thalia inspirational and straightforward. Books ordered online can be picked up within two hours at a nearby bookshop and purchases can be affected online-that tiresome queuing at the till is no longer necessary. The customer can follow his preferred bookseller online with the Thalia app and access exclusive recommendations.

The tolino alliance which was established in 2013 is of special significance. Thalia was one of the founding members and up to now over 2,000 booksellers have affiliated. Mayersche has been a tolino partner since 2015. This German industry solution has successfully thrown down the gauntlet to the US rival Kindle-something quite unique worldwide. With the campaign "World, be alert" along with the digital book subscription Skoobe, Thalia is currently putting its faith in industry solutions in order to make a deeper impact in the interests of the act of reading and the printed word.

Manuel Herder, publisher from Freiburg and majority stakeholder in Thalia sees the merger of the two companies as "the right step by the entrepreneurial family, putting down a marker against the market power of global online retailers and standing up for high-street reading culture".

The parties involved have agreed not to disclose details of the contract which is subject to approval by the Federal Cartell Office.

About Mayersche

The Mayersche bookshop was founded in Aachen in1817 by Jacob Anton Mayer. It celebrated its second centenary anniversary in 2017. Since its foundation Mayersche has been in family ownership. Today the long-established company is run by the family Falter and is represented in 55 locations in the west of Germany. The Shop-in-Shop provider Best of books is part of the company. All in all 1000 employees including 120 trainees are employed by the company. Further information on www.mayersche.de, www.bestofbooks.de

About Thalia

Thalia was established in 1919 in Hamburg and today is market leader in retail bookstores in the German-speaking world. The company is owned by the Herder, Kreke, Busch and Göritz families. With around 300 bookstores in Germany and Austria, including a 50% share in more than 30 Orell Füssli Thalia PLC bookstores in Switzerland. Thalia combines bookselling tradition and innovative digital services which make the shopping experience individual, inspiring and at the same time enjoyable. The company's successful omni-channel strategy enables access for the customer to its products via all imaginable channels. With around 3,000 events per year, Thalia is one of the biggest promoters of reading and literature in Germany. Thalia employs 5,000 people. The administrative headquarters is in Hagen. For further information: Thalia.de

Press Contact:

Mayersche: Katja Mankiewicz, Head of Marketing and PR, E-Mail: k.mankiewicz@mayersche.de, Tel.:++ 49 (0) 241 4777 554

Thalia: Claudia Bachhausen-Dewart, Head of Corporate Communications, E-Mail: presse@thalia.de, Tel.: ++ 49 (0) 2331 8046 1559

Fotocredit: Thalian / John M. John

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