Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Worried book industry gathers for convention- Book Expo America
By HILLEL ITALIE, AP National Writer Hillel Italie, – Tue May 26, 2009

NEW YORK – This weekend's BookExpo America will be a good time for promoting, predicting, mingling — and worrying.

For example, the audio market.
Except for e-books, sales are down throughout the publishing industry and the numbers have looked ever steeper for audio. The Association of American Publishers has seen a 47 percent drop in audio revenue this year: Just 14 publishers reported, but they include Simon & Schuster, HarperCollins and virtually all the major New York companies.

According to Nielsen BookScan, which covers about 75 percent of sales (although not audio downloads), the number of audiobooks sold is down 20 percent this year from 2008. Data compiled by the Institute for Publishing Research projects a 4.7 percent revenue fall in 2009.

Anthony Goff, president of the Audio Publishers Association, doesn't know the exact figures (the APA is assembling its own statistics). But he is sure they aren't good.
"We know all too well what's happening in the marketplace," says Goff, the publisher and director of audiobooks at the Hachette Book Group USA, which also provided sales information to the Association of American Publishers.
The full story here.

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