London Book Fair (LBF) moves to June 2021

Andy Ventris announced as new director

London Book Fair (LBF) moves to June 2021 (Image: London Book Fair)

Reed Exhibitions has recently announced that The London Book Fair (LBF) will take place from 29 June to 1 July 2021, with Andy Ventris appointed as the fair’s new director.

LBF, which was originally scheduled for March 2021, has been moved to June to provide the best possible opportunity of creating a live event where the publishing industry can reconnect and do business.

With over a decade’s experience delivering global events, LBF’s new director Andy Ventris is an accomplished leader who joined Reed Exhibitions in 2013 and has worked across some of the company’s key brands. With feedback from LBF stakeholders showing that 89% of exhibitors and 76% of visitors believe face-to-face meetings are extremely important for business, the new June dates have been chosen in line with the current UK projected timelines for large-scale events restarting.

Andy Ventris, director of LBF

Andy Ventris, director of LBF, said, “Large-scale events in the UK are subject to ever-changing national and local guidelines and regulations. We have made the decision to move LBF to June 2021 to create the best opportunity of hosting a live event.”

Given the dynamic nature of the pandemic, we will continue to closely monitor the situation, and if the current outlook changes, will make a final decision on the live event’s feasibility by the end of March 2021 at the very latest. We want to give all our partners, exhibitors, and visitors this date to work towards, as we appreciate how much planning and resource goes into preparation for a trade fair of this scale.”

Darren Johnson, chief executive officer at Reed Exhibitions UK, added, “The London Book Fair is an iconic event in the global publishing calendar with a 50-year history. The fair is of huge importance to Reed Exhibitions, and, in response to feedback from our stakeholders, by moving the fair’s dates, we hope that it will serve the industry as an opportunity to reunite in person in 2021. We are delighted that Andy Ventris will be taking on the role of director. Working together with the experienced and passionate LBF team, we are looking forward to bringing the industry back together in 2021.”

Planning for 2021 is taking place in collaboration with the LBF advisory board, who are meeting in November.

Taking place at Olympia, the LBF organizers are working closely with the venue to ensure a safe event environment that meets the needs of visitors and exhibitors. A number of health, hygiene, and safety measures have been developed, and these will be reviewed and implemented as the event approaches.

Nigel Nathan, managing director, Olympia London, said, “We’re delighted that The London Book Fair will once again be taking place at Olympia London in June 2021. The London Book Fair is a highlight in our calendar and always brings so much energy and vibrancy to our venue and the surrounding area. Working with the LBF team, we’re putting a wide range of safety measures in place ready for this big event – sensible measures to make sure the show is as enjoyable and memorable as always for the publishing community. We can’t wait to welcome everyone back.”

The London Book Fair (LBF) is the global marketplace for rights negotiation and the sale and distribution of content across print, audio, TV, film, and digital channels. Taking place every spring in London, it is a unique opportunity to explore, understand, and capitalize on the innovations shaping the publishing world of the future. LBF brings you direct access to customers, content, and emerging markets. LBF will return to its usual Spring dates in 2022.

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

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