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ECPA Wire: Industry News

Christian Collective at Frankfurt Book Fair reports busy and valuable event

Wednesday, October 31, 2012   (0 Comments)
Posted by: Sheri Toomb
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Christian fiction strong category among European rights buyers and youth fantasy fiction also surging

The ECPA Christian Collective, made up of over a dozen rights professionals representing nearly 30 Christian publishing companies, have returned from the Frankfurt Book Fair, reporting a busy and valuable event for Christian publishing.  The Fair, held this year on October 10-14 in Frankfurt Germany, is heralded as the world’s largest book fair with over 7,000 international exhibitors. ECPA’s Christian Collective has represented Christian publishing at the Frankfurt Book Fair for over 25 years.

"Frankfurt continues to be one of the most important shows for rights marketing,” said Cindy Riggins of Riggins International Rights Services and an annual participant in the ECPA Collective.  "Relationships are very important in rights sales, so these in-person meetings are critical to a successful rights program.”  Riggins met with 65 international publishers and saw increased interest in fiction and youth fantasy fiction among European rights buyers.  She reported:

"Fiction was still very strong among European rights buyers.  Our re-launch of best-selling Brock and Bodie Thoene’s works for the international market was well received.  Film tie-ins October Baby and Unconditional were popular from B&H.  Abingdon and New Hope’s contemporary fiction titles that also address social issues were frequently requested, too.  After years of promoting youth fantasy fiction from category leader AMG/Living Ink, it appears now is the time that international publishers are finally looking seriously at this growing area.  In the non-fiction category, the most requested titles outside of Christian living were on marriage, family and personal growth from a Biblical perspective.”

 Along with agents Cindy Riggins and Fred Rudy -- who combined, represented nearly 20 publishers in the ECPA Collective -- ten other Christian publishers including Zondervan, David C Cook, Tyndale House, Baker Publishing Group, Harvest House, and Crossway; represented their own titles and personally met with international rights buyers.  Jim Elwell, Director of International Publishing at Tyndale House Publishers, reported:  "The show was a wonderful success for us, and it may have been our busiest ever.  We had many quality meetings, and lots of opportunities coming out of our time. Having ECPA handle this service for us enables us to focus on the business we are handling rather than the logistics.”


ECPA manages the business arrangements for the Fair on behalf of the publishers.  "By establishing the Christian Collective at both the Frankfurt and London Book Fairs each year, ECPA provides a collaborative presence for Christian content, while providing back-end logistical services to its member publishers enabling them to effectively sell rights without worrying about all the business arrangements necessary in having a professional, convenient booth and meeting space,” states ECPA President/CEO Mark Kuyper. 


Significant announcements made at the Fair this year included:

  • The formation of a new global standard to categorize and classify book content by subject, called Thema, which was announced by BISG and representatives from 16 countries.
  •  BookShout!, a social e-reading platform with strong presence in Christian publishing, announced a revolutionary technology that will allow users to legally import and aggregate all their previous and future digital book purchases from any source, including Kindle and Nook, at no cost.

ECPA is already confirming participants for the Collective at the 2013 Frankfurt Fair and has plans to add booth sharing as an option.  Commitments need to be in by end of November.  Those interested in participating in the Christian Collectives in Frankfurt or London should contact ECPA at or ASAP.

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