Japanese eBook Sales Rose 13.2% in 2016

New data from Japan’s Research Laboratory of the Publishing Science shows that the Japanese publishing industry revenues dropped to 1.47 trillion yen (around US $ 12.8 billion) last year, down 3.4% compared to the previous year.

Book sales accounted for 737 billion yen of that total, and only declined 0.7%. Magazine sales in Japan accounted for much of the rest, and totalled 734 billion yen. PublishNews.com.br notes that this was the first time in 41 years that magazine sales in Japan fell short of book sales.

eBooks, on the other hand, were the bright spot in the market stats. Japan’s digital books market grew 13.2% in 2016, compared to 2015. eBook sales totalled of 25.8 billion yen.

The highlights of the Japanese market in 2016 included the ongoing shift from the paper manga to the electronic manga; the bankruptcy of Taiyo-Sya, which was the fifth largest distributor of books and magazines in the country; and the expansion of the digital magazine reading market.

image by Guwashi999

Nate Hoffelder

View posts by Nate Hoffelder
Nate Hoffelder is the founder of The Digital Reader. He has been blogging about indie authors since 2010 while learning new tech skills weekly. He fixes author sites, and shares what he learns on The Digital Reader's blog. In his spare time, he fosters dogs for A Forever Home, a local rescue group.


  1. Lemondrop16 March, 2017

    I wonder what percentage Amazon got of the e-book sales.

  2. […] week I reported that the Japanese book publishing industry's revenues dropped around 4% in 2016, but the news was slightly better for manga […]

  3. […] According to Japan's Research Laboratory of the Publishing Science, Japanese ebook sales rose 13% in 2016, to 25.8 billion yen. In comparison, book sales alone accounted for 737 billion yen. […]

  4. David Cyze27 September, 2017

    “Japan’s digital books market grew 13.2% in 2016” – That is an amazing number. With growth like that, the market will double in five years.

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