We had it so good, it seems... but the global financial crisis, online suppliers, e-books and changing customer habits have wounded the New Zealand book industry.
Now Hachette is reduced to a sales and marketing office in this country; Pearson a sales presence only and HarperCollins a more slender model post-surgery? Book sales show a decline of around 15 to 16 percent. What’s happening here? Is it a correction in the market, or merely a blip? The Read asked Dr Sam Elworthy, president of the Publishers Association of New Zealand. “A bit of both,” is Sam’s opinion.
Purchasing books online from overseas sources is a global issue for international publishers and not just restricted to New Zealand, according to Booksellers NZ CEO, Lincoln Gould, commenting on the recent announcement by Hachette NZ that they are restructuring their New Zealand operations because of a drop in New Zealand sales.
The global book industry, especially in the English speaking countries, has been in ferment in recent years as online selling and the advent of e-books have put enormous pressure on publishers.