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 $397m to the economy with sales from book stores accounting for nearly 60per cent ($234m) and eBook sales at seven per cent ($29m)
The contribution from eBook sales has risen by five per cent since 2012 but it has not reached the level experienced by authors and publishers in other markets like the UK. However, last year, those markets saw some levelling off of in the demand for eBooks and, like New Zealand, a resurgence of physical book sales.
Paula Browning, chief executive at Copyright Licensing New Zealand, which 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. Browning says the publishing industry is taking steps to address those data gaps.

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