Welcome to millsandboon.com.au - the one of a kind destination for avid romance fiction fans.
Click on the links below for information about who we are and how we got here.
For additional assistance, please visit our Contact Us area or browse through our Help section.
Business Purpose & Values
Our global Mission Statement is: Be a global publisher of great reading entertainment for women.
In addition, the Australian office has adopted the following core values - these values are intrinsic in all our activities, both internal and external.
Decisiveness: acting flexibly and quickly to maximise opportunities
Advocacy: being an ambassador for our brands and company
Relationships & Fun: commitment to customer relationships, fostering an environment of creativity and fun
Leadership: ensuring individual and team success
Integrity & Innovation: being trustworthy, open and always acting with integrity
New Approaches: finding different solutions
Good Finding: showing care, respect and understanding
The www.millsandboon.com.au story ...So Far
In 1998 Mills & Boon Australia launched www.romance.net.au, Harlequin Enterprise's first website anywhere in the world. The site was originally launched to provide romance fiction lovers with information about the latest titles and the chance to purchase romance novels with ease. Although quite basic in its form, www.romance.net.au was a pioneering site. It provided basic book and author information and - very advanced for its time - a shopping facility :) Since 1998 Mills & Boon's online presence has undergone several "revolutions".
In 2000 www.romance.net.au evolved into www.eharlequin.com.au. Through it's improved search facility, wider array of books and author information and the addition of the online reads www.eHarlequin.com.au became a favoured destination for romance fiction lovers from around the world.
In 2006 www.eHarlequin.com.au was relaunched as the ultimate online destination for avid Harlequin readers. Our new-look website is unashamedly romantic in focus and with its fresh contemporary look, new must-have content, big savings off the retail price, speedy delivery and value-driven postage rates it really is a great place to shop!
In 2009 www.millsandboon.com.au was relaunched. The new look site brings a fresh modern feel to the ultimate destination for romance readers. With a fantastic range of books, big savings off retail prices and competitive postage rates the new site also offers free online reads and exciting promotional offers only available online.
The History of Mills & Boon
In 1908 - Gerald Mills and Charles Boon decided to form their own book publishing house in London. Initially Mills & Boon was an educational and general publisher although its books were mostly inclined towards fiction, sporting subjects and pastimes. Included in the large range of authors whose work the company published in those early days were P.G. Wodehouse, Jack London and Georgette Heyer.
The 1920's proved a turning point in the fortunes of Mills & Boon, heralding the most important step the company was to take. Following the Great War a new range of light romantic fiction books was introduced for sale to the burgeoning private lending library market which was rapidly coming to be dominated by the newsagency chain WH Smith and the pharmacy chain Boots. This new trend in reading soon spread to Australia and the other Commonwealth countries which constituted much of Mills & Boon's export market. Romantic fiction proved immensely popular, quickly becoming a vital and soon a dominant part of the Mills & Boon list.
Ironically it was the outbreak of World War II, which placed Mills & Boon on the path to becoming the powerful romantic fiction publisher it is today. Early in the hostilities, paper supplies for printing purposes were rationed drastically, prompting Charles Boon to concentrate solely on publishing romantic fiction, at least for the duration of the war.
By the early 1960's the WH Smith and Boots' lending libraries were beginning to close down as the public turned more and more to buying the now well-established, readily available and very reasonably priced paperback editions. Mills & Boon, faced with a rapid decline of its traditional market, investigated the possibility of publishing its hitherto hardcover editions in paperback format. Mills & Boon turned to its North American associate Harlequin Enterprises for a way out of the dilemma. Initially Harlequin published a wide range of fiction and non-fiction but romantic fiction soon became the dominant activity. By 1964 it was Harlequin's sole publishing activity. In 1951 Mary Bonnycastle had realised the potential of Mills & Boon's books which were selling in the North American market in their hardcover editions. Buying the rights for North America, Harlequin began publishing the Mills & Boon stories in paperback and found a huge market ready to buy. Harlequin Enterprises became a public company in 1968, just prior to its move from Winnipeg to Toronto a year later. The phenomenal growth of Harlequin was fuelled by techniques more akin to the mass marketing of consumer goods pioneered by the likes of Proctor & Gamble than staid world of book publishing. Even so, the growth of the 1960's was minor when compared to the expansion of the 1970's and 1980's when sales rose from 3 million copies annually to in excess of 200 million by 1988.
Much of Harlequin's growth in the 1970's was due to its expansion into overseas markets. The first significant move took place in 1971 when the Boon family signalled its desire to sell the Mills & Boon business. Harlequin became the parent company of the publisher whose books had given it such phenomenal growth. Mills & Boon Australia, established in 1974, was the group's first foray into marketing outside Britain or North America. When it was decided to publish Mills & Boon and Harlequin books in languages other than English, Dutch was the pioneer language chosen. A Harlequin subsidiary opened in Amsterdam in 1975.
The opening of the Netherlands operation coincided with the takeover of Harlequin Enterprises by Torstar Corporation, publisher of Canada's largest metropolitan daily newspaper The Toronto Star. This signalled a further period of expansion with the establishment of other subsidiaries and joint ventures in Europe and Japan. It was in the Japanese market Harlequin scored one of its greatest successes.
The establishment of Mills & Boon Australia in 1974 gave the company its first formal marketing presence in this country although Mills & Boon books had been sold here for many years by wholesalers and importing booksellers. The opening of the Sydney office led to more formalised marketing arrangements and an agreement with William Collins to distribute and represent Mills & Boon throughout Australia. Mills & Boon established its own sales and merchandiser force in early 1982 and in 1984 Gordon and Gotch replaced Collins as distributors. Since 1991 distribution has been handled by Network Distribution Company in Australia, and by Gordon & Gotch (NZ) Ltd in New Zealand.
In the 1990's the Harlequin brand was added to the well known Mills & Boon name. Today, the Harlequin Mills & Boon brand dominates the paperback romance market in Australia and New Zealand, and wherever English language romance paperbacks are sold in Asia.
Today the company is known as Harlequin Mills & Boon and we are the undisputed leader in Australian and New Zealand romantic fiction sales with a market share that continues to grow. More than one in five paperbacks sold in Australia is published by Harlequin Mills & Boon. Harlequin Enterprises (Australia) publishes over 800 volumes annually.
Our Parent Company
Harlequin is a division of HarperCollins Publishers, one of the largest English-language publishers in the world. Harlequin has offices in 18 countries, including offices in Toronto, New York and London.
Fun Facts About Mills & Boon.
- Mills & Boon sell over 130 million books worldwide each year - approximately 4 books per second! They are also sold in more than 100 countries and translated into 26 languages around the world!
- During the past four decades, Mills & Boon characters have kissed each other over 20,000 times, shared about 30,000 hugs, and headed for the altar at least 7,000 times.
- If you set out to read all of the Mills & Boon books sold over the past 10 years, and averaged about two hours per book, you would be reading for the next quarter of a million years.
- "Mills and Boon" is in the Oxford English Oxford dictionary meaning "a (type of) popular romantic novel.
The millsandboon.com.au office is located in North Sydney - just 15 minutes north of the CBD.
Our address is:
Level 13, 201 Elizabeth Street
Sydney NSW 2000
Harlequin Mills & Boon (Australia) is a sales and marketing office. We occasionally have vacancies for sales and marketing staff, as well as support staff in the finance, administration and customer liaison areas. Please check back here regularly for details of jobs as they arise At present we have no editorial staff in the Australian office and so all job applications for proofreading, editing, sub-editing etc must be forwarded to our overseas editorial offices.
Mills & Boon Limited
18-24 Paradise Road
Richmond, Surrey TW9 1SR
Harlequin Books/Mira Books
225 Duncan Mill Road Don Mills,
Ontario M33 3K9
Silhouette/Harlequin Books/Steeple Hill Books
6th Floor 300 East 42nd Street,
New York NY 10017 USA
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