Book Publishing Industry Rebounds

New Zealand experiences a resurgence of physical book sales.

A report released today on the economic contribution of New Zealand book publishing shows that the industry has rebounded from difficult trading conditions in 2013 and 2014 to a position of growth in sales of both physical books and eBooks in 2015.

The work of authors and publishers contributed $397 million to the economy with sales from book stores accounting for nearly 60% (with an impact of $234 million) and eBook sales at 7% (with an impact of $29 million.)

In 2012 the contribution from eBook sales was only 2%. The growth seen in the past 3 years is helping trade publishers to diversify their revenue base, as is the growth in online sale of physical books. At 7% of sales, the New Zealand eBook market has not yet reached the level experienced by authors and publishers in other markets like the UK, however in 2015 those markets saw some levelling off of in the demand for eBooks and, like New Zealand, a resurgence of physical book sales.

The value of educational publishing in dollar terms has remained constant but it is expected that export sales of New Zealand educational resources - such as the Chinese deal announced by Dame Wendy Pye earlier this year – will see growth in future years.

Paula Browning, Chief Executive at Copyright Licensing NZ that commissions the report each year on behalf of the book publishing industry says, “As a book lover it’s reassuring to see that our publishing industry continues to thrive and grow. Readers now have access to books in either print or digital formats and the investment that our authors and publishers have made in digital distribution is starting to pay off.”

The report acknowledges the challenges of capturing data on an industry that now generates revenue from many different channels and identifies that sales from offshore websites bypass traditional data capture mechanisms is a particular challenge. Paula Browning says that this is an issue for all New Zealand creative industries and the publishing industry is taking steps of its own to address those data gaps.

The full report is available by viewing the PDF below

For more information please contact: Paula Browning, CLNZ


Photo by Serge Kutuzov on Unsplash

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