Friday, April 24, 2009

Publishers Move Towards India and China During Recession

Earlier this week, we talked about Shakespeare's presence in India's heartland. It is no surprise that with book sales slumping in US and UK, publishers are setting their sights on countries like India, China and South Africa.

Via guardian.co.uk
In China, inspirational business books such as Who Moved My Cheese and family health titles compete with the latest blockbusters; in India, classics from Agatha Christie and Enid Blyton vie for shelf-space with homegrown authors and the penned advice of billionaire IT entrepreneurs; while in South Africa, the boarding school antics of John 'Spud' Milton have captured readers' imaginations and created a Harry Potter-like craze.

Across the world, the appetite for English language books is booming and publishers struggling under the weight of the recession in their core markets of the US and UK are increasingly turning their sights overseas.

In contrast, overseas English language markets are positively booming. India is the world's third largest English language book market and has been growing at about 10% per annum for several years.

But with its booming population, of whom 350 million speak English, it is no surprise that most of the publishers at the London Book Fair are turning their attention, eagerly, to India.

"India is an incredible growth market at the moment," says Alistair Burtenshaw, the exhibition director of the London Book Fair. "It provides fascinating business opportunities in almost all sectors, and that's absolutely the case in publishing."

Chiki Sarkar, editorial director of Random House India, says the country is now looking for its own enduring serial novelists, able to produce consistently good mass-market fiction: "What kinds of books are we looking for? We've just started a series of Indian historical romances and are scouting for local Barbara Cartlands and Georgette Heyers, and I think everyone is looking for the Indian Frederick Forsyth."
Read the entire article to see how this trend is emerging and also why publishers are setting their sights on China and South Africa.

Image Source : DragonWoman

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