Last page for Columbia press, UChicago may get book contracts

By Amos Gewirtz

The University of Chicago Press will be absorbing some of the contracts from the Columbia College Chicago Press, which is being phased out of working existence. A meeting between the two presses to flesh out some of the details took place in early February.

The meeting was meant to facilitate the transfer of titles in Columbia College Chicago’s inventory to the University of Chicago Press, the largest single distributor of printed titles currently owned by Columbia College Chicago Press, according to Stephen DeSantis, director of academic initiatives at Columbia College. In the coming months, UChicago Press will choose which of over 100 titles to acquire.

“All rights to the titles reside with Columbia College Press. What happens to those rights as the press is phased out will be determined as the process happens,” DeSantis said.

According to Desantis, an annual loss of $300,000 paired with decreasing undergraduate enrollment within Columbia College made the continuation of the press no longer feasible.

While Columbia College Chicago Press is still in the process of finishing production of several titles, it will officially shut down by the end of 2013.

The University of Chicago Press declined to comment for this story.