The Bookseller‘s lead story yesterday kicked off with:
“Publishers must take ownership of selling books or face quickly becoming irrelevant, former Borders UK chief Philip Downer told delegates at Tools of Change Frankfurt today (11th October).
Downer said he was concerned that publishers could go the same way of chain booksellers if e-book prices were driven down and the new technology damaged “supplier diversity”. He added: “I do believe that perhaps the free market has gone too far.”
Downer said bookshops had “failed to adapt to change, failed to innovate, and many of them have gone to the wall as a result” and told publishers that they could not rely on it being “business as usual”. He said: “Old sources of income will dry up, and businesses will have to be restructured and repurposed to survive. This includes publishing houses. The past may be a foreign country, but the future is another planet.”
Read the full article at The Bookseller or follow Philip’s blog at Front of Store. Philip spent two days at Kingston University recently, welcoming our new students, delivering a “state of the industry” address and providing feedback on students’ assignment presentations. Students in turn described his own presentation as “a game changer”.