In researching agents I came across one that not only looks like a good fit category/genre-wise, but also has a somewhat recent sale listed on PM that's very much in the wheelhouse of my MS, but different age category, etc.---ie. not too close a match.
However, reading the entry, it states that the deal was made by this agent/agency "on behalf of" another agent/agency.
What does that mean exactly?
Is it likely this book wasn't one the agent I'm researching was necessarily invested in and more of just a business transaction? The author of said book is listed as one of her clients. Was just curious to understand that scenario before making a possibly irrelevant reference in my query.
You'll see this phrase most often in sub-rights deals.
If my film agent sells the option on a book, it's on my behalf: I made the first deal, selling to the publisher.
If an agent sells rights to publish on Carkoon, it's often on behalf of the agent who sold domestic rights, again, the first sale.
Sometimes an agent sells a book on behalf of a colleague if the colleague is sick, on mat leave, or some other long term out of the office situation.
When I looked on Publishers Marketplace, I also noticed that non-US agents sometimes had US deals made on their behalf by US-based agents.
Clearly that's an agent who had a book she loved, and wanted to make sure it found a good home here so partnered with someone who knows the US market.
What this means for you: most likely the on-behalf-of agent reps the author and for some reason called in air support. You wouldn't be making an irrelevant reference to mention the book.