About Us

Quercus is a young, vibrant, internationally successful and award-winning publisher of fiction, non-fiction and children’s books.

Quercus was established by Mark Smith (now Quercus CEO) and Wayne Davies (now Managing Director, Quercus Contract Division) in May 2004. The Directors had previously worked together at the Orion Publishing Group.

Starting out in a small office in Dorset Street, London, the company quickly expanded, producing best sellers with each of its first two titles, Universe and Speeches that Changed the World. These titles have now generated sales of approximately 250,000 and 800,000 copies respectively, and both continue to sell strongly around the world.

In July 2006 Quercus made its debut appearance on the UK bestseller lists with Peter Temple’s The Broken Shore, and by October the company had been listed on Plus Markets, attracting new levels of investment and ensuring a strong financial platform for future development.

2007 began with our first major literary prize, for Stef Penney’s The Tenderness of Wolves. It not only won the Costa Best First Novel Award, but was ultimately named as victor in the overall Book of the Year category. We were also pleased to be unveiled as one of three finalists at the Fast Growth Business Awards 2007, in the ‘PLUS New Company of the Year’ category.

In 2008, under our MacLehose Press imprint, we published Stieg Larsson’s The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, which won a Galaxy British Book Award. In 2009 the book’s sequel, The Girl Who Played with Fire, became the company’s first number one bestseller. It was the first translated title to top the UK hardback fiction chart – a landmark in British publishing history.

Business size

101-500 employees


Commercial presence