Augsburg Fortress, Publishers announced Nov. 7 significant changes in its business operations, saying it will focus on group-use materials for congregations, such as faith formation and worship materials, and textbooks and monographs for higher education.
Based on a year of market analysis and business research, a strategic plan for the publisher’s direction was presented and unanimously approved at a regular meeting of the board of trustees for Augsburg Fortress Oct. 24-25 in Minneapolis.
Thirteen positions will be added to the company’s information technology, marketing and sales operations. Fifty-five positions will be eliminated, said Beth A. Lewis, AFP president and chief executive officer. The company has 242 full- and part-time staff.
The ELCA publisher’s update priorities will result in other changes, Lewis said:
• It will close nine bookstores by April 30, 2009. A store at Luther Seminary, St. Paul, Minn., is not owned by AFP. Augsburg Fortress’ Canadian bookstores will remain open.
• AFP will no longer provide bookstore operations at synod assemblies and most large ELCA churchwide events. It will continue to provide a bookstore at ELCA Churchwide Assemblies.
• Giving envelopes and worship supplies, such as communion wafers and cups, and candles, will still be available. Items that don’t sell well will be dropped.
© 2014 Augsburg Fortress, Publishers