Trade books increased by $94.7 million (+6.3%) to $1.59 billion in the first quarter of 2018 compared to the same period in 2017, with growth in Adult Books, Children & Young Adult Books and Religious Presses. Publishers also saw increased revenue for Professional Books, University Presses and Higher Ed Course Materials.
Some First Quarter trends include:
• Publishers saw revenue gains in Adult Books, Professional Books, and University Presses continuing trends from 2017.
• Adult Books saw double-digit growth in January (13.7%) and February (12.4%).
• While eBook revenue decreased for the quarter, March saw 1.5% growth for the format.
• Downloaded audiobooks continue their rapid growth, with publisher revenue up 32.1% for the first quarter.
Trade Book Formats
In the first quarter, print books generally continued their growth from 2017. Revenue from print books totaled $1.14 billion, up about $67.7 million (6.3%), from the first quarter of 2017. The increase is attributed to growth in trade’s two largest formats - hardback books (12.0%) and paperback books (3.2%).
Downloaded audio continued its significant growth into the first quarter of 2018, up by 32.1% over the first quarter 2017. In the first quarter of 2018, the format added $24.0 million in revenue growth compared to the same period last year, making it the format with the second highest revenue growth - just behind hardback books (up $57.1 million).
While eBooks declined by 3.2% for the quarter, they had one month of growth. Publisher revenue for eBooks grew 1.5% in March 2018 compared to March 2017, with Adult eBooks being the reason for the increase.