U.S. publishing company. It was founded by B. Cerf and Donald S. Klopfer in 1925. As it grew it published many successful and prestigious writers and gathered under its corporate roof many other firms, incl. Alfred A. Knopf, Inc. (acquired 1960), Pantheon Books (1961), Ballantine Books (1973), Fawcett Books (1982), and the Crown Publishing Group (1988). It was itself bought several times before becoming in 1998 a part of one of the world's largest media companies, Bertelsmann AG.