Bloomsbury tops IPG’s 2013 independent champions
Publisher’s academic and professional division scoops the flagship Award, with nine more companies and individuals honoured.
The Independent Publishers Guild is proud to reveal the winners of the 2013 IPG Independent Publishing Awards, run in association with The Bookseller and The London Book Fair. The 13 Award winners are:
IPG Independent Publisher of the Year: Bloomsbury Publishing, Academic and Professional Division
IPG Trade Publisher of the Year: Constable & Robinson
IPG Children’s Publisher of the Year: Nosy Crow
Frankfurt Book Fair Academic & Professional Publisher of the Year: Bloomsbury Publishing, Academic and Professional Division
IPG Education Publisher of the Year: Crown House Publishing
PrintOnDemand Worldwide Specialist Consumer Publisher of the Year: Accent Press
IPG Newcomer Award: Phoenix Yard Books
The London Book Fair International Achievement Award: Nosy Crow
Ingram Content Group Digital Publishing Award:Constable & Robinson
Nielsen Digital Marketing Award: The History Press
IPG Diversity Award: Saqi Books
IPG Young Independent Publisher Award: Vicky Blunden, Myriad Editions
GBS Services to Independent Publishers Award: Faber Factory
Topping the list of winners this year is the Academic and Professional division of Bloomsbury, which has grown rapidly over the last few years, both organically and through acquisitions. It scooped the IPG Independent Publisher of the Year Award, becoming the seventh recipient of the flagship honour, joining Jessica Kingsley Publishers, Templar Publishing, Alastair Sawday Publishing, Earthscan, Continuum and Constable & Robinson.
Bloomsbury also received the Frankfurt Book Fair Academic and Professional Publisher of the Year Award—one of five publishing category winners from which the overall winner was judged. Its fellow Publishers of the Year were Constable & Robinson, Nosy Crow, Crown House Publishing and Accent Press, in the Trade, Children’s, Education and PrintOnDemand Worldwide Specialist Consumer categories respectively.
Constable & Robinson doubled up at the Awards with success in the Ingram Content Group Digital Publishing category, following its standout work on ebooks and web content. Another double winner was fast-growing children’s specialist Nosy Crow, which took home the London Book Fair International Award in addition to its category prize.
A fellow children’s publisher, Phoenix Yard Books, received the Newcomer Award. The History Press picked up the Nielsen Digital Award, Saqi Books the Diversity Award, and Faber Factory the GBS Services to Independent Publishers Award. Completing the roll call of winners is Vicky Blunden of Myriad Editions, the second winner of the Young Independent Publishers Award.
The 13 Awards were given at a gala dinner at the Crowne Plaza Heythrop Park in Oxfordshire on Thursday 7 March, part of the IPG’s biggest ever Annual Conference. Executive Director Bridget Shine said: “Congratulations to all the winners of the 2013 IPG Independent Publishing Awards and all those who were shortlisted. We had a very strong set of contenders this year, and our judges found it hard to decide the winners. The Awards are going from strength to strength, and the dozens of recipients over the last seven years show the incredible breadth and achievements of IPG members. We hope even more of our members will be inspired to enter in 2014.”
The IPG is grateful to its partners on the Independent Publishing Awards, The Bookseller and The London Book Fair; to its Award sponsors, The Frankfurt Book Fair, Grantham Book Services, Ingram Content Group, Nielsen, PrintOnDemand Worldwide, PSR Insurance Brokers Ltd and Hiscox; and to its print sponsors, CMP.
The IPG also thanks its expert judges of the Awards: Chris Benson, TaylorWessing LLP; Ann Betts, Nielsen; Colin Bottle, consultant; Nick Clee, BookBrunch; Neill Denny, formerly of The Bookseller; Elise Dillsworth, EDA; Stuart Dredge, journalist, www.theappside.com; Marzia Ghiselli, Alief; Ruth Jones, Ingram; Lindsey Mooney, Kobo; Peter Newsom, international consultant; David Roche, Chairman of the LBF Advisory Board; Ian Taylor, Ian Taylor Associates; and Tom Tivnan, The Bookseller.
Judges’ comments about the 2013 Award winners follow, together with details of the companies shortlisted in each of the categories.
IPG Independent Publisher of the Year
Bloomsbury Publishing, Academic and Professional Division wins this flagship Award from a strong shortlist made up of the five winners of the Publisher of the Year categories. Judges singled it out for the breadth of its academic and professional publishing and its clear vision for what it wishes to achieve. Even allowing for the resources at its disposal, they recognized a company with a true entrepreneurial and independent spirit. “Some people have been doubtful about Bloomsbury’s move into academic and professional publishing, but it proved last year that it is already a big player in its sector. It has used its money wisely and made everything work exceptionally well.”
Also shortlisted in this category were the winners of the four other Publisher of the Year categories: Accent Press, Constable & Robinson, Crown House Publishing and Nosy Crow.
IPG Trade Publisher of the Year
Constable & Robinson takes this Award for a second year in a row after continuing the reinvigoration of a venerable independent publisher into a thoroughly modern one. It has moved confidently into a range of digital projects while holding its print sales together in a declining market. “Constable & Robinson has pushed ahead on so many fronts in the last year with enormous energy,” said the judges. “It is impossible not to be impressed.“
Also shortlisted in this category were Alma Books and John Blake Publishing.
IPG Children’s Publisher of the Year
Nosy Crow wins, like Constable & Robinson, for the second year in a row, having triumphed in 2012 after its first full year in publishing. Twelve months on it is honoured again after even stronger commercial success and particularly impressive export, rights and coedition business. Judges admired its innovative products, marketing and can-do attitude. “From a standing start Nosy Crow has had an exceptional couple of years. It has bags of energy.”
Also shortlisted in this category were Usborne Publishing and Walker Books.
Frankfurt Book Fair Academic & Professional Publisher of the Year
Bloomsbury Publishing, Academic and Professional Division scoops this Award for a year of standout sales and profitability, and the release of a string of creative new print and digital products. Judges saw that it had grown organically as well as through bolt-on lists, and admired its international ambition. “Bloomsbury may have had the resources to grow, but making its strategic acquisitions work thorough integration is a substantial achievement.”
Highly commended by the judges in this category is Liverpool University Press. It follows a year of record sales and profits, achieved via focused partnership publishing, rigorous academic schedules and successful dips into the trade sector.
Also shortlisted in this hotly contested category were Edward Elgar Publishing and Woodhead Publishing.
IPG Education Publisher of the Year
Crown House Publishing wins after a year that saw it grow sales in a challenging market and pick up a string of awards. Judges applauded its good-looking physical books and growing ebook sales, and noted its strong connections to authors and customers. “Crown House really cares about what it does and is passionate about making a difference in education. It is doing just about everything a modern independent education publisher should be.”
Also shortlisted in this category were Advance Materials and Phonic Books.
PrintOnDemand Worldwide Specialist Consumer Publisher of the Year
Accent Press takes this very competitive category for the success of its Xcite Books list of erotic fiction. 2012 was the year that vindicated its niche and highlighted it as a rising star, delivering disciplined publishing and imaginative marketing. “Accent Press got into erotic fiction long before Fifty Shades of Grey and while everyone else was pulling out,” said the judges. “Now lightning has struck the market and it is well positioned to take advantage.”
Also shortlisted in this category were Osprey Group, Quiller Publishing and Witherby Publishing Group.
IPG Newcomer Award
Phoenix Yard is rewarded for quickly carving out a distinctive personality and building commercial nous in children’s publishing. It has achieved success with awards and established a profile among booksellers, in the media and at festivals. Judges also liked its attractive books and support of work in translation. “This publisher has thought very clearly about what it was setting out to do, and has approached it in a professional and stylish way.”
Also shortlisted in this category was How 2 Become.
The London Book Fair International Achievement Award
Nosy Crow picks up this Award for substantial export, coedition and rights sales. Deals in dozens of territories reflect its ambition, and good partnerships in territories including the US and Australia have positioned it in key markets. Judges also liked the way apps were developed with international potential firmly in mind. “The breadth of the global strategy is very impressive. Nosy Crow is very quickly establishing itself as a brand to follow around the world.”
Also shortlisted in this category were Advance Materials and Top That! Publishing.
Ingram Content Group Digital Publishing Award
Constable & Robinson scoops this prize in the light of soaring ebook sales and a raft of online publishing ventures, all successfully monetised. It impressed in particular with its ability to spot gaps in the market and careful analysis of pricing models. “Constable & Robinson is doing things that many much larger publishers haven’t even dreamed of,” said the judges. “It has secured every nut and bolt of its digital work and constantly tries new things.”
Highly commended by the judges in this highly competitive category is Faber & Faber. It was recognized for exponential ebook sales growth and a host of compelling apps in 2012.
Also shortlisted in this category were Bloomsbury Publishing and Nosy Crow.
Nielsen Digital Marketing Award
The History Press wins here for its expansive campaign around the 100th anniversary of the sinking of the Titanic. Judges were impressed by its courting of specialist online communities and social media work, and liked the way The History Press had measured the impact of its marketing on sales. “For a small publisher to cut through all the noise going on around the Titanic anniversary and achieve so much on a tiny budget is incredibly impressive.”
Faber & Faber and Nosy Crow were also shortlisted in this category.
IPG Diversity Award
Saqi Books was picked by the judges for contributing to diversity with cutting-edge books from numerous territories, and the Middle East and North Africa in particular. It has adroitly balanced scholarly and accessible publishing, and has never been afraid to tackle controversial issues. “Bringing so many books from Arab and Islamic countries to the UK is an impressive achievement and can only help to promote better cultural understanding,” said the judges.
Also shortlisted in this category were Frances Lincoln Children’s Books and Phonic Books.
IPG Young Independent Publisher of the Year
Vicky Blunden of Myriad Editions triumphs for her transformation of the publisher’s fiction list and sales. Judges noted her efforts that go way beyond clever acquisitions and editing to the creation of compelling, saleable titles. They also saw evidence of collaborative work and careful nurturing of authors. “Getting literary fiction right is one of the hardest jobs in publishing, but the causal link between her contribution and impact on the company is clear.”
Also shortlisted in this category were Lynn Gaspard, Saqi Books and Emma Langley, Phoenix Yard Books. Judges applauded the energetic and creative work of all three nominees, noting that the future of independent publishing seems in very good hands.
GBS Services to Independent Publishers Award
Faber Factory is honoured for its host of services, including the deft handling of ebook production and distribution, generous sharing of market knowledge and first-rate client care, helping many IPG members to join the digital revolution. “They have consistently provided an efficient, friendly and powerful service, so that independents can stay at the forefront of digital publishing and reap the rewards of collective representation with retailers,” said one.
Also shortlisted in this category were Bounce Sales and Marketing and Compass-DSA.
For any further information about the 2013 IPG Independent Publishing Awards, please contact:
Bridget Shine, IPG Chief Executive
Tel 01437 563335