The University of Nebraska buys up the Jewish Publication Society?
Why didn't it get bought by Hebrew Union College or the Jewish Theological Seminary or Yeshiva University or the Reconstructionist Rabbinical College or New York University or Harvard or Yale or Penn or Magnes Press of Hebrew University?
A great Jewish book publisher goes under and gets buried in Nebraska? The Cornhuskers? The birthplace of Kool-Aid. Home to the world's largest ball of stamps and Carhenge. Location of the Museum of the Fur Trade?
The Journal Star reports:
The University of Nebraska Board of Regents approved an agreement Friday allowing the NU Press to buy the book inventory of a 123-year-old Jewish publisher in Philadelphia.But wait, the story on the JPS site is a bit different in its details.
The press plans to buy nearly 250 book titles, including the most widely read version of the Jewish Bible, from the Jewish Publication Society. Several regents expressed concern about whether the purchase would be profitable for NU Press and requested future updates.
The $610,000 purchase means the press will publish, market and distribute existing and new books by the Jewish society.
The society's annual revenue is between $1 million and $1.5 million, and it sells more than 50,000 copies of the Bible each year, representing nearly half of its book sales, according to NU Press Director Donna Shear.
JPS will continue its 120-year-old mission as an independent, not-for-profit publisher of Jewish books of enduring worth, including the Jewish Bible (TANAKH). The Society will concentrate exclusively on content production of such manuscripts....So they are collaborating with Nebraska. Oh, now that makes sense.
JPS Director Rabbi Barry Schwartz will continue to acquire new JPS titles, while the University of Nebraska Press will handle production of those titles, including design, editing, typesetting, and printing and sales and marketing. The University of Nebraska Press will also handle warehousing and distribution of the JPS backlist.