An energized Publishing Business Conference and Expo, Book Business and Publishing Executive magazines’ annual event at the Times Square Marriott Marquis, March 19-21, was grounded in optimism and realism, and primed for a promising future in the digital age for book manufacturing and print-based book production.
Addressing the overflow audience at the Marriott's Astor Ballroom, our very own Joan of Arc at the ramparts, Editorial Director Noelle Skodzinski—fully armed with the arguments of comon sense and history to support her—sounded a much-needed balancing and defiant keynote to prevailing “stiff upper lip” scenarios about the decline of the publishing industry. She reminded us, paraphrasing from both Monty Python and the Holy Grail and the Encyclopedia Britannica blog’s notice that it had discontinued its venerable print edition, that publishing is not dead, change is okay, and that the future is alive with new opportunities in our pursuit of continued success and excellence in the publishing business.
In the current economy, the book manufacturing industry appears to be caught square between the proverbial rock and a hard place: on the one side, a publishing business suffering from decreased consumer demand and on the other, suppliers destabilized by the credit crunch. The industry, however, is showing surprising resiliency, having been thrust into difficult times with eyes wide open. Printers are determined to meet the challenge of a new marketplace defined by multiplatform delivery systems, environmental awareness and niche distribution models in the hopes that the post-“great recession” economy will find a book manufacturing industry emerging leaner, “greener” and more focused on the place of books in a digital age.
Regarding the book manufacturing industry’s commitment to “green” principles, it could be said that a page has truly turned. Over the past decade, consideration of climate impacts and paper sourcing has become central to the industry’s approach, and, along the way, many manufacturers have discovered ways to balance the need to economize, invest in infrastructure and reduce environmental impacts—often through innovative policies and practices that manage to do all three.
Speak to just about any book manufacturer these days about his or her business, and you’re likely to hear a laundry list of concerns: an economy teetering on the edge of a recession, paper’s rising costs and tighter supply, the need to respond to publishers’ and environmental groups’ “green” demands, and mounting pressure to improve turn times and to upgrade technology, among others. And yet, for an industry so seemingly wrought with challenges, a look at Book Business’ annual list of North America’s Top 30 Book Manufacturers (on pages 16-17) appears to tell a different story. Just seven of the 30 printers who appear
Printers generally like to talk about investments they’ve made in print technologies—offset or digital. Perhaps that’s because it suggests they’re doing well and that they’re investing in their customers’ businesses. Besides, talking about a slick, new machine that requires little to no makeready time and gets up to color with minimal effort is sexy. Well, comparatively speaking. The clunkier “back-office” equipment found in the typical finishing department is perhaps not as provocative, but talk to most any book printer or trade binder, and they’ll likely confide that the bindery machines are the real workhorses. Indeed, investing in the bindery is just as important
No region in the world is safe from piracy. That's the conclusion of Patricia Judd, executive director of international copyright enforcement and trade policy at the Association of American Publishers (AAP) in Washington, D.C. "Piracy is a worldwide phenomenon," Judd says. The AAP estimates losses to its members of more than $600 million a year in about 67 markets across the globe. As more book publishers explore their offshore book manufacturing options, foreign book manufacturers are boosting efforts to lure American publishers. It's all in the name of lowering costs. But does this offshore manufacturing activity put publishers at an increased risk of
In compiling the Top 30 Book Manufacturers for our print issue (May/June), some privately held companies, whose revenues may have qualified them to be ranked, chose not to participate. In order to recognize all the book manufacturers surveyed for the ranking, BookTech editors compiled this alphabetical listing. Ambrose Printing, Nashville, Tenn. Alcom Printing Group, Harleysville, Pa. Balmar Inc., Falls Church, Va. Banta Corp., Menasha, Wis. Bertelsmann Arvato, New York Bolger Concept to Print, Minneapolis Burton & Mayer, Brookfield, Wis. Cadmus Communications, Richmond, Va. Carter Printing, Richmond, Va. Cavanaugh Press, Baltimore Cedar Graphics, Hiawatha, Iowa CJK, Cincinnati Commercial Communications, Hartland, Wis. Courier Corp., N. Chelmsford, Mass. Dickinson Press, Grand Rapids, Mich. Dollco Printing, Ottawa Dome Printing, Sacramento, Calif. Edwards Brothers, Ann Arbor, Mich. EP
Committing to recycled paper is not an easy decision for a publisher. Here at New World Library, a 25-year-old publishing company known for books by personal growth pioneers Shakti Gawain (Creative Visualization), Eckhart Tolle (The Power of Now), and Deepak Chopra (Seven Spiritual Laws of Success), it's been an incremental process. But each step forward has resulted in a more Earth-friendly product. Committing to use recycled paper was the first step. We became a member of the Green Press Initiative (GPI), a non-profit environmental advocacy group, to take advantage of their information, contacts, and planning assistance for converting to recycled and environmentally friendly publishing. GPI's planning
1. R.R. Donnelley & Sons Company is the leading North American book printer. The company's book operations provide a full range of integrated service solutions to help book publishers deliver communications to their customers. With seven book operations across the nation, R.R. Donnelley provides services such as * hardcover and softcover book manufacturing using web-offset, sheetfed-offset and digital printing technology; * conventional and digital prepress operations, including composition and page makeup; * custom publishing and print on demand; * packaging design and assembly; and * online services, in which customers' digital information is converted into Web-ready formats. 2. Quebecor World is the largest commercial