Publishing in 2020 report from the PA
27 April 2021
On 27 April 2021 the Publishers Association
published its latest overview of the UK publishing industry and
found publishing in 2020 to be resilient in the face of Covid.
The invoiced value of UK publisher sales of books, journals and
rights/co-editions combined rose 2% to £6.4 billion in 2020. UK
sales income rose 4% to £2.5 billion while export sales income
remained unchanged year-on-year at £3.7 billion.
Key findings include:
- Total print down 6% to £3.4 billion
- Total digital up 12% to £3 billion
- Total consumer publishing sales income rose 7% to £2.1
- Fiction up 16% to £688 million
- Non-fiction up 4% to £1 billion
- Audio downloads up 37% to £133 million
- Children's up 2% to £396 million
Stephen Lotinga, Chief Executive of the
"Publishing has proved incredibly resilient throughout the
significant challenges of 2020. It's clear that many people
rediscovered their love of reading last year and that publishers
were able to deliver the entertaining and thought-provoking books
that so many of us needed.
"Despite the positive overall performance of the publishing
industry, we shouldn't ignore the fact that it's been a
particularly challenging year for education publishers and many
smaller publishers. It's also been a hugely difficult time for many
booksellers and authors whose livelihoods have been enormously
"With bookshops now able to reopen, and physical events
returning, we are optimistic that people will soon be able to enjoy
books together again. We need to harness this return to reading and
build on the huge opportunity this presents to everyone."
For more on this and to download the report, see the Publishers Association website.
See also Marc Chandler's article in The Bookseller of 27 April
2021: UK publishing income up 2% in Covid-hit 2020
despite print decline.