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A Quick Look At Chinese Book Market  

2015-07-01 22:24:25|  分类: Book |  标签: |举报 |字号 订阅

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I've been doing a research on German Book Fair and International Cultural Exchange since last November in Frankfurt Book Fair. Recently I began working with their new project called "The Markets: Global Publishing Summit", which is a new event from the Frankfurt Book Fair and Publishing Perspectives that showcases seven strong and vibrant publishing regions. (Germany, China, the U.S., Mexico, South Korea, Turkey, Indonesia )

I did some basic research on these markets, sketched the situation in seven short passages. I hope they could deliver some useful information for those who are interested in these markets.

A Quick Look At Chinese Book Market

by Hui Wang

[caption id="attachment_194" align="aligncenter" width="600"]p23001985 United booth of Chinese state-owned publishing groups, Frankfurt Book Fair 2014[/caption]

China now has the second largest book market in the world. The country published over 400,000 titles annually. On the basis of current size and the growth trend, it could surpass the U.S. and be the largest market in the next five to ten years.



The market still has a strong growth momentum. In 2014, Chinese retail book market increased by 10%. The retail bookstore market which had been hurt by online bookstores has recovered, with a growth of 3.26% over 2013. Social science, children’s and YA books and adult fiction were the most welcomed categories on retailers’ sales market. Textbooks accounts for more than 50% of all titles sold and almost 50% of combined turnover.

The market is much more open today. However, as other cultural industries, book publishing is still strictly controlled by the government. The country has 580 stated-owned publishers. There are no official figures for private publishing companies. According to the state policy, they are not “real” publishers. They don’t have the right to apply for ISBN numbers directly. Instead they must cooperate with state-owned publishers to acquire or buy ISBN numbers.

But the power of private publishing companies is rising and playing a crucial role. There are at least 2,000 such publishing companies in Beijing alone. Unlike the “in system” enterprises, private publishers are more professional and more sensitive to the market. They have led the industry to a higher level, bringing diversification and specialization to the industry.

Digital publishing in China showed significant growth. In 2013, it has a total of 254.04 billion yuan income (about 41 billion USD), an increase by 31.3% over the past year. The market is huge, but also a scene of chaos. The portal web site giants, “online-literature” websites, e-commerce companies, the leading internet and technology groups, social networks and even telecommunication operators all have launched their own e-book or digital publishing platforms. Since the content resource is limited, these platforms are of homogeneity. More innovative business models are badly in need.

2014 is known as "the first year of media convergence” in China. The central government proposed “Guiding Opinions for the Converged Development of Traditional Media and New Media”. Leading internet and technology groups such as BAT (Baidu, Alibaba, Tencent) all tried to build comprehensive creative platforms. Content is seen as the most important factor in this convergence trend. Intellectual-Property Right (so called "IP" in China) is a new gold mine for those who are working in this cross-media environment.

But the “IP wave” in China goes to a wired direction. A traditional novel could be an IP, an online fiction could be an IP, a song could be an IP, or even posts and jokes from social network could be IPs. Recent entertainment news reported that a Chinese internet company would adapt a Chinese classic dictionary(Xin Hua Dictionary) to a film. This dictionary is well-known in China, it was hence considered as a “marvelous” IP.

Publishing industry could benefit a lot from this irrational situation, no matter it is a result of capital game or just the phenomenon of phase in the development of Chinese entertainment industry.

 

Top 10 Chinese publishers

   (out of a total 580 publishers based on economic results)

  1. People’s Education Press (Focus: Education)

  2. Higher Education Press (Education)

  3. Chongqing Publishing Group (General/education and trade)

  4. Foreign Language Teaching and Research Press (Education)

  5. Science Press (STM)

  6. People’s Medical Publishing House (STM)

  7. China Machine Press (STM, non-fiction)

  8. Jiangsu Education Publishing (Education)

  9. China Light Industry Press (Textbooks, non-fiction, how-to)

  10. Beijing Normal University Publishing Group (Education)


 

Top 10 Chinese publishing groups

(32 publishing groups in total, based on region. Overall ranking based on operating income, operating assets, book value of the company, total profit)

  1. Jiangsu Phoenix Publishing & Media

  2. Hunan Publishing Investment Holding Group

  3. China Education Publishing & Media Group

  4. Shandong Publishing Group

  5. Anhui Publishing Group

  6. Zhejiang Publishing United Group

  7. Jiangxi Publishing Group

  8. Hebei Publishing & Media Network

  9. China Publishing Group Corp.

  10. Guangdong Publishing Group


Famous private publishing companies
Beijing Motie Book Corporation Company (Xiron)
Thinkingdom Media Group Ltd. (Xin Jing Dian)
Hangzhou Guomai Media Co.,Ltd
Post Wave Publishing Consulting (Beijing) LTD.CO
Cheers Publishing Company (Kan Lu Culture)
Shanghai Jiujiu reader Cultural Industrial Co., Ltd
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