AAP: Publisher Revenue Up 6.7% in First Quarter, eBook Revenue Down 4.5%

The Association of American Publishers the March StatShot Monthly report which includes data for the first three months of 2019 on Monday.

Among the highlights:

  • Overall participating publisher revenue was $2.5 billion in the first quarter, an increase of $160.8 million (+6.7%) compared to the same period in 2018.
  • Publisher net revenue for trade books in the first quarter was $1.6 billion, an increase of 5.7% from January-March in 2018.
  • eBook revenues fell 4.5%, to $244.4 million.
  • Audiobook revenues rose to $141.3 million. The increase was entirely due to downloadable audiobooks; revenues from physical audiobooks fell 17.1%.
  • Hardback revenues rose 7.8%, to $549.6 million.
  • Paperback revenues rose 3.1%, to $553.6 million.

AAP: Publisher Revenue Up 6.7% in First Quarter, eBook Revenue Down 4.5% AAP ebook sales

Press release:

or the first quarter of 2019, overall participating publisher revenue was $2.5 billion, an increase of $160.8 million (+6.7%) compared to the same period in 2018, according to the Association of American Publishers (AAP) StatShot Monthly report. For March 2019, overall publisher revenue was $733.6 million, an increase of $140.5 million (+23.7%) from the same period in 2018 for all tracked categories (Trade, PreK-12 Instructional Materials, Higher Education Course Materials, Professional Publishing and University Presses.)

Trade Publishing

In the first quarter of 2019, publisher net revenue for trade (consumer) books, including sales to bookstores, wholesalers, direct to consumer, online retailers, etc., was $1.6 billion, an increase of 5.7% from January-March in 2018.

First Quarter 2019 Trade Book Revenue (in millions)

Jan. - Mar. 2019

Jan. - Mar. 2018

Percent Change

Adult Fiction/Non-Fiction

$1008.0

$984.2

2.4%

Children’s/YA

$428.0

$390.2

9.7%

Religious Presses

$174.5

$144.7

20.6%

Total Trade

$1,610.5

$1,519.1

6.0%

March 2019 saw strong gains for hardback books, with revenue increasing 17.8% from the prior year to $192.8 million, due to across-the-board increases for the second consecutive month in each of the trade categories. Hardback Adult Books increased 13.9%, hardback Children’s Young/Adult increased 15.6% and hardback books from Religious Presses increased 35.4% compared to March 2018.

Downloaded audio continued its strong growth in the first quarter of 2019, up by 35.3% from the same period in 2018. While eBooks declined 4.5% overall for the first quarter, eBook revenue for Religious Presses increased 8.4% ($1.0 million) for January – March 2019 compared to prior year.

January - March Trade Revenue by Format (in millions)

Jan. – Mar. 2019

Jan.- Mar. 2018

Percent Change

Hardback

$549.6

$510.1

7.8%

Paperback & Mass Market

$553.6

$536.7

3.1%

eBooks

$244.4

$255.9

-4.5%

Downloaded Audio

$133.6

$98.7

35.3%

Physical Audio

$7.6

$9.2

-17.1%

Board Books

$32.3

$28.2

14.6%

Other

$89.2

$80.2

11.2%

Total Trade

$1,610.5

$1,519.1

6.0%

Education and Scholarly Publishing

Total revenues for participating education and scholarly publishers in March 2019 were $177.8 million. For the first quarter of 2019, total revenues for education and scholarly publishers increased 7.9% compared to the first quarter of 2018, due to increases in both Higher Education course materials (+11.6%) and PreK-12 Instructional Materials (+8.0%).

January – March Education and Scholarly Publishing (in millions)

Jan. – Mar. 2019

Jan. – Mar. 2018

Percent Change

Higher Ed Course Materials

$582.1

$521.8

11.6%

PreK-12 Instructional Materials

$232.6

$215.4

8.0%

Professional Books

$100.9

$109.8

-8.1%

University Presses

$12.0

$12.9

-7.0%

Total

$927.6

$859.9

7.9%

Publisher net revenue, including sales to bookstores, wholesalers, direct to consumer, online retailers, etc., is tracked monthly by the Association of American Publishers (AAP) and includes revenue from about 1,372 publishers, with participation subject to change over time. The StatShot Annual, Higher Education Annual, and PreK-12 Annual reports for 2017 are available for purchase; additional information about them can be found here.

image by tpjournal via Flickr

Nate Hoffelder

View posts by Nate Hoffelder
Nate Hoffelder is the founder and editor 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 Comment

  1. […] Adult and kids’ sales rose in the first quarter of 2019. […]

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