International CreativeManagement (ICM), the LA talent agency is opening a new London office calledICM Books to be based in Soho Square. Not to be confused with the UK agency runby Duncan Heath, the new division of the Hollywood agency is designed to buildon its reach in the New York book world as well as accelerate the sale offoreign translation rights for its US authors.

The office will initially bestaffed by Margaret Halton, foreign rights director, who is transferring fromICM New York to London; foreign rights manager Betsy Robbins; Tricia Davey whowas a motion picture agent in ICM's LA headquarters; and Kate Jones, formerlyeditorial director at Viking Penguin and recently a director of Ian FlemingPublications.

Overseeing the operation areAmanda Urban and Esther Newberg, co-heads of ICM's New York operation andlongtime heads of the publishing division.

"We cannot overstatethe value of having an office so close to the marketplaces to which wesell," said Halton, who will oversee the sale of foreign language rightsto all ICM books, whether they be written by US or UK authors. "Likealmost all major publishers, we now have branches on both sides of theAtlantic."

"In addition tohandling British publication rights to the stellar ICM list, I am also buildinga client list of British writers," added Kate Jones."Havingstarted my career in a literary's agents office, this is a homecoming forme."

"The UK obviouslyenjoys a rich association with some of the best literature ever written,"said Amanda Urban. "Esther and I felt it was essential to have acommitted group on the ground in London discovering a new generation oftalent."

"If you take a look atthe Academy Awards Best Picture category, year in and year out so many of thenominees are adapted from literary works," said TriciaDavey."My objective in this operation is to expose our UK-basedclients to the best creative teams in the Los Angeles and New York film andtelevision markets."

"As a full serviceagency, we hope to offer our UK clients access to our film and television armsas well as our theatrical, music, commercial, lecture and video gamedivisions," concluded Esther Newberg.