Penguin Books adding a self-publishing division

The parent company of Penguin Books, Pearson, has bought one of the biggest self-publishing companies, Author Solutions Inc (ASI).

The ¬£74 million deal is a big step by Penguin Books into the rapidly expanding self-publishing industry…

The growth of e-book readers and tablet computers has prompted a change in the route taken by authors, with increasing numbers choosing to bypass traditional publishers and release and market their own titles.

Some 150,000 writers have published their work through ASI since it was established in 2007…

Penguin chief executive, John Makinson, said that buying Author Solutions “will allow Penguin to participate fully in perhaps the fastest-growing area of the publishing economy and gain skills in customer acquisition and data analytics that will be vital to our future”…

Philip Jones, deputy editor of The Bookseller said it is “absolutely right” that Penguin is tapping into the self publishing market…”This is where writers are,” he said, adding “they have recognised a gap in the market in indie publishing.

They are not buying a franchise, they are buying an infrastructure company. There’s nothing retrograde about this decision to buy ASI…”

With access to an additional 1,600 members of staff, Penguin’s takeover of ASI will provide it with the additional resources to forge ahead with plans to digitize its back catalogue of 16,000 titles within two years.

Penguin said ASI would be integrated into Penguin’s back office, but would continue to run as a separate business.

I’m pleased to offer this post for the number of readers and followers of my personal blog who are writers and photographers. This offers another avenue for the sale and distribution of their work.

RTFA – for there is some criticism of the purchase and expansion by author’s organizations. I didn’t take the time to include quotes in the post because, frankly, I have never known any of these guilds to be worth joining – or supporting. Sorry.

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