Benedict Evans

We're pounding the hard concrete floors of the Javits Center today — it's day 1 of our Book Expo coverage, as we juggle sessions at two compelling events packed with content: IDPF Digital Book 2013 and Publishers Launch. My colleague Lynn Rosen and I have each gathered snippets of wisdom to share with our readers from presentations we have heard today.

This morning at the International Digital Publishing Forum's Digital Book 2013 Plenary Session, Laura Hazard Owen of interviewed Chantal Restivo-Alessi Chief Digital Officer of HarperCollins in a session titled: Digital Publishing In Transition: Steering a Course in the Middle of A Storm. Restivo-Alessi, who comes to publishing from the music business, noted some differences between the two industries, notably how music is more about selling individual songs rather than albums (not as much of a concern in book publishing). She noted great areas of opportunity in catalog reinvigoration through price promotions, but saw bigger gains to be made in product innovation, both with apps and with enhanced books.

 British publishers have reported their biggest annual sales ever and insisted rumours of their demise at the hands of growing e-book consumption are greatly exaggerated.

Total spending across printed and digital formats rose 4pc to hit £3.3bn in 2012, according to the Publishers Association.

Printed books still account for the vast majority of sales and slid by just one per cent to £2.9bn.

Publishers were cheered, however, as continued growth in the digital market more than made up for the shortfall.

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