Pakistan News & Features Services
All eyes remain focused on the Frankfurt Book Fair 2012 from October 10 to 14. Hailed as the biggest book and media fair of the world, now in its 64th year, it continues to catch the imagination of the audience. It’s living to the tradition of being exciting, enlightening, innovative and truly colourful.
The ‘Global 50’ CEO panel at the Frankfurt Book Fair, during the past few years, has been bringing together CEOs from major publishers to discuss the state of the world publishing industry.
This year, however, organizers brought about a change in policy and instead invited executives from some of the world’s major digital and retail platforms to speak. Their message was loud and clear: E-books are a global game-changer for the book business.
This year’s panel included Santiago de la Mora (Google), Jamie Iannone (Barnes & Noble), Elodie Perthuisot (Fnac), Michael Serbinis (Kobo) and Venkat Valliappan (India Plaza) with Rudiger Wischenbart, an international publishing consultant, being the event moderator.
The panelists were unanimous in their thoughts on how they foresee the e-book market playing out and what impact will have on the traditional players in the publishing industry? Not surprisingly, they all of them foresee awesome growth on the horizon, and despite the short-term challenges, benefits for publishers and booksellers as well as the readers.
“We are strong believers in the expansion of the book market and we believe everybody in the content ecosystem will be benefit,” Santiago de la Mora reckoned.
The dawn of the e-book market was great for publishers and booksellers, because, at its core, it was great for readers. For under $100 you can start reading on an e-ink device. From a global nature, access to books in multiple languages becomes easier accessing works by independent authors or small publishers becomes easier. We like to say you’re just eight seconds from finding a book to starting to read it. That’s really a game-changer,” Jamie Iannone thought.
“We look at this as the beginning of a 25-year cycle. Unlike some others in the field, we have been global from the beginning. Our board thought we were nuts, this little Canadian company that was going to try to sell in all the countries simultaneously. But we built a partner model, which I think so far is unique in the industry, where we power booksellers and work with publishers to create a win-win situation,” Michael Serbinis remarked.
The focus on e-books worked well for the annual CEO panel, which usually focuses on the results of the The Global 50 rankings, compiled under the aegis of French trade publication Livres Hebdo with Wischenbart. It will be even more interesting to see where the market stands during the next few years.