News / Asia

Struggling Publishers Look at India’s Thriving Book Market

Struggling Book Publishers Look at India’s Growing Market
Struggling Book Publishers Look at India’s Growing Market
Aru Pande
Despite more people turning to e-books in the digitized world, the printed word is still a first choice for the majority in India. Foreign publishers are increasingly tapping into the South Asian country to take advantage of the world's third largest English-language book market, which, unlike others, is seeing double-digit growth.

Forget e-readers. For many Indians, like Shema Kallimel, there is no comparison to turning the pages of a hardback.

"My dad says as a kid, when I didn’t know how to read and write, I would take his big fat books and just start flipping," she said.
 
She is not alone. While a technology boom has meant the closing of bookstores in many parts of the world, here in India the market for books is thriving.
 
The boom is evident in the more than 1.4 million people who will visit the annual New Delhi World Book Fair, where 1,100 exhibitors from India and around the world display their latest books.

At the Harper Collins India stall, American bestsellers are stacked alongside the latest works by Indian authors.
 
Minakshi Thakur says the U.S. publisher will put out 160 books by Indians this year to keep up with the country’s growing readership.

“India has got the largest youth population, one of the largest now, and literacy is growing in India very fast - and that’s proportionate to the readership growing in India -  and that’s why I think the book industry is growing, There are more people writing in English," said Thakur.

Indeed, more writers are catering to the millions of English-speakers in India. 

Binny Kurian is with the National Book Trust India, the publishing house that organizes the book fair and was created decades ago to promote reading.

“Even if you talk of the English-speaking population, which they say is about three percent, then when you put it into a one billion and over [population], three percent works out to be a huge, huge market - thousands and thousands of colleges and universities.  They all make up something you can sustain for generations and generations," said Kurian.

Dozens of foreign publishers have set up shop in India to tap into a growing market that is shrinking elsewhere.
 
"Teaching the concept of math or science through the storybook, the editorial content combined with the illustration, is something that is not available here yet," said Greg Taylor, who is with a South Korean company that wants to give Indian schoolchildren a new take on learning."

His and other foreign companies here hope to leave the book fair with a deal that will give them entry into India’s lucrative market.

Nielsen Book, the U.S.-based information provider, began tracking book sales in India in 2010. The company found that, in 2011, the volume of book sales grew by 45 percent during the first half of the year alone.

And that figure is said to only account for just over a third of India’s book market, since small, independent retailers - who often do not keep electronic records of their sales - sell many of the books in the country.

You May Like

Turkey's Controversial Reform Bill Giving Investors Jitters

Homeland security reform bill will give police new powers in search, seizure, detention and arrests, while restricting the rights of suspects, their attorneys More

Audio Slideshow In Kenyan Prison, Good Grades Are Path to Freedom

Some inmates who get high marks could see their sentences commuted to non-custodial status More

Ali Regained Title in Historic Fight 40 Years Ago

'The Champ' knocked Foreman out to regain crown he had lost 7 years earlier when US government accused him of draft-dodging and boxing officials revoked his license More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Victorious Secularists Face Challenge to Form Government in Tunisiai
X
Henry Ridgwell
October 30, 2014 11:39 PM
Official results from Tunisia show the Islamist Ennahda party has failed to win the second free election since the so-called "Arab Spring" uprising in 2011. Ennahda, which handed power to a government of technocrats pending the elections, lost out to the secular party Nidaa Tounes. Henry Ridgwell reports from London that the relatively peaceful poll offers some hope in a volatile region.
Video

Video Victorious Secularists Face Challenge to Form Government in Tunisia

Official results from Tunisia show the Islamist Ennahda party has failed to win the second free election since the so-called "Arab Spring" uprising in 2011. Ennahda, which handed power to a government of technocrats pending the elections, lost out to the secular party Nidaa Tounes. Henry Ridgwell reports from London that the relatively peaceful poll offers some hope in a volatile region.
Video

Video Africa Tells its Story Through Fashion

In Africa, Fashion Week is a riot of colors, shapes, patterns and fabrics - against the backdrop of its ongoing struggle between nature and its fast-growing urban edge. How do these ideas translate into needle and thread? VOA’s Anita Powell visited this year’s Mercedes Benz Fashion Week Africa in Johannesburg to find out.
Video

Video Smugglers Offer Cheap Passage From Turkey to Syria

Smugglers in Turkey offer a relatively cheap passage across the border into Syria. Ankara has stepped up efforts to stem the flow of foreign fighters who want to join Islamic State militants fighting for control of the Syrian border city of Kobani. But porous borders and border guards who can be bribed make illegal border crossings quite easy. Zlatica Hoke has more.
Video

Video China Political Meeting Seeks to Improve Rule of Law

China’s communist leaders will host a top level political meeting this week, called the Fourth Plenum, and for the first time in the party’s history, rule of law will be a key item on the agenda. Analysts and Chinese media reports say the meetings could see the approval of long-awaited measures aimed at giving courts more independence and include steps to enhance an already aggressive and high-reaching anti-corruption drive. VOA’s Bill Ide has more from Beijing.
Video

Video After Decades of Pressure, Luxembourg Drops Bank Secrecy Rules

European Union finance ministers have reached a breakthrough agreement that will make it more difficult for tax cheats to hide their money. The new legislation, which had been blocked for years by countries with a reputation as tax havens, was approved last week after Luxembourg and Austria agreed to lift their vetoes. But as Mil Arcega reports, it doesn’t mean tax cheats have run out of places to keep their money hidden.
Video

Video Kobani Refugees Welcome, Turkey Criticizes, US Airdrop

Residents of Kobani in northern Syria have welcomed the airdrop of weapons, ammunition and medicine to Kurdish militia who are resisting the seizure of their city by Islamic State militants. The Turkish government, however, has criticized the operation. VOA’s Scott Bobb reports from southeastern Turkey, across the border from Kobani.

All About America

AppleAndroid