BookExpo and BookCon finally cancelled

Better late than never – Reed finally gives into the obvious

125
New York city skyline Michael Maser
New York city's skyline. Photo Michael Maser via Unsplash

14 April 20. As expected, Reed Exhibitions announced the cancellation of this year’s BookExpo and BookCon, which had initially been postponed from May to July. In a statement issued by fair director Jennifer Martin the organizers concluded: “As the pandemic has continued to escalate in the United States and we see the challenges it has brought for the book industry, it’s clear that 2020 is no longer a viable option for this community.” On the BookExpo website, she also pointed out that tickets for the two 2020 events will be automatically reimbursed.

Even though BookExpo and BookCon (formerly Book Expo America) were postponed from May to July this year, some of the major participants announced even then, that they would not follow the book fair organizers, Reed Exhibitions, in the postponement. After Penguin Random House, three of the other Big Five in publishing, i.e., Simon & Schuster, HarperCollins, and Hachette, pulled out and appealed to the organizers to cancel this year’s events altogether. Now it seems that good sense has finally prevailed.

Javit Centre turned into makeshift hospital for Covid-19

According to the New York Times, the venue that was scheduled for both Book Expo and BookCon events, New York’s Javits Center, has already been requisitioned by the US-Army in order to turn it into a 1,000-bed makeshift hospital for Covid-19 cases. Governor Cuomo of New York state gives daily detailed press conferences with facts, science and numbers. One of these press conferences was held at Javits Centre on the West side of Manhattan in New York city over the week-end. On the other side of the ocean, London’s Excel exhibition center is also being turned into a medical center holding 4,000 beds for Covid-19 patients.

Book fairs update of 27 March 2020

2023 promises an interesting ride for print in India

Indian Printer and Publisher founded in 1979 is the oldest B2B trade publication in the multi-platform and multi-channel IPPGroup. While the print and packaging industries have been resilient in the past 33 months since the pandemic lockdown of 25 March 2020, the commercial printing and newspaper industries have yet to recover their pre-Covid trajectory.

The fragmented commercial printing industry faces substantial challenges as does the newspaper industry. While digital short-run printing and the signage industry seem to be recovering a bit faster, ultimately their growth will also be moderated by the progress of the overall economy. On the other hand book printing exports are doing well but they too face several supply-chain and logistics challenges.

The price of publication papers including newsprint has been high in the past year while availability is diminished by several mills shutting down their publication paper and newsprint machines in the past four years. Indian paper mills are also exporting many types of paper and have raised prices for Indian printers. To some extent, this has helped in the recovery of the digital printing industry with its on-demand short-run and low-wastage paradigm.

Ultimately digital print and other digital channels will help print grow in a country where we are still far behind in our paper and print consumption and where digital is a leapfrog technology that will only increase the demand for print in the foreseeable future. For instance, there is no alternative to a rise in textbook consumption but this segment will only reach normality in the next financial year beginning on 1 April 2023.

Thus while the new normal is a moving target and many commercial printers look to diversification, we believe that our target audiences may shift and change. Like them, we will also have to adapt with agility to keep up with their business and technical information needs.

Our 2023 media kit is ready, and it is the right time to take stock and reconnect with your potential markets and customers. Print is the glue for the growth of liberal education, new industry, and an emerging economy. We seek your participation in what promises to be an interesting ride.

– Naresh Khanna

Subscribe Now

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here