CONTEC Frankfurt initiated on October 9th by an optimistic and promising v-p of conferences, entertainment and media, Holger Volland, who said that CONTEC this year was going to be a “good mood” Frankfurt Book Fair.
The tone though turned more serious soon after the opening speech shifting to the acknowledgement of the challenges publishers face in today’s market. Healthy growth is difficult for the waste part of the industry because of obstacles like very limited library budgets and digital business models, which are more risky and less hearty than traditional analogue solutions. Also highlighted were the growing trend, which is huge and is challenging several different industries; both consumers and publishers settling for lower quality content, provided it is free.
In the following debate several stakeholders and other people attending the book fair pointed out the industry has to reinvent it self with the same pace as the music industry has been doing. Service like Apple’s iTunes was taking up as pivotal example of how to tackle the likes of piracy within the music industry. Both the debate and the book fair in general have created a lot of traction, opinions and “favourite” quotations from the fair through social platforms.
Our trip to Frankfurt has been a success so far. The debates have inspired us. There's clearly a lot of focus on creating a business model, which will last in the long run for both small and big publishers. Revenues are not really growing and there also seems to be a lot of attending directed towards keeping the expenses at a low level. With that in mind and because we have to pay attention on our own limited budget we decide to check in at the Park Inn Frankfurt Airport hotel and sleep there during the following days of the Frankfurt Book Fair…