MGIP November newsletter

Welcome speech by Jean Arcache, MGIP Frankfurt dinner

Dear Guests, dear Members,

It is my great pleasure as the MGIP President to welcome all of you tonight in Frankfurt for our kick-off fair dinner which seems is now “the place to be” for talented illustrated book publishers!

You are tonight more than 120 attendees.

We are missing Martin Heller, one of our founding members who passed away yesterday. All or thoughts go to his family and we remember the great moments we had with him.

You are tonight more than we had expected: we had to say “no” to half the people on the waiting list!

So it may be safer for you to book your dinner seat for 2017 as of tomorrow to be sure to be part of it or ask for your membership application form to be given priority!

I want to thank Barbara for her excellent organization, as well the Board of Directors for helping me to manage it.

In three months time, we will be in the year 2017, and this will be a very important year for the history of the Motovun Group: Robin Wood and I will tell you more about this anniversary year. I want to thank all members who contributed to raise the 40th anniversary complementary budget. We can give them a great applause!

But how will the publishing world be in 2017? What major trends will contribute to our editorial business? I am confident in our future but we have to keep our eyes open to recognize the signs of changes.

I see 5 major trends:

Local language publishing combined with a high ratio of economic and demographic growth is creating new countries of readers such as those in Africa and in India.

Printing is moving from offset to digital. That is making small print run more affordable and this is good for the back list revival and can help to keep a low stock level of investment.

Print is back versus digital and indivídual techniques raise the value of standard books for BToC customers – first for children’s publishing and expending into other genres.

Even more important: Books content reflect more and more identity, fighting for freedom.

Books are again being removed from the libraries’ bookshelves for political or religious reasons. Books are turned again into symbols of cultures by extremists; publishing is more and more a fight against censorship in too many countries like recently in Turkey where 26 publishing houses were closed by the government.

The cultural level is unfortunately weakening all around the world. As an example: if we look at the data semantics lengths: twitter is limited to 140 characters, B. Obama used 25 words per sentence for his speeches, H. Clinton is using 12 words per sentence and D. Trump only 5 to 6 words per sentence and writes all his speeches with less than 400 different words!

Maybe this is the main reason why millennials are now exchanging thanks to YouTube, Snapchat and Facebook with more photos and videos than sentences with text. Will publishing follow this dangerous trend?

How can the Motovun Group help you to face these five trends (and a few more):

- Motovun Group is an AGORA as in the Ancient Greek cities with their public central place devoted to high level discussions;

- Motovun Group is a think tank, building the future and giving a voice of warnings;
- Motovun Group is a market place, a unique one as an international group
- Motovun Group is a community of worldwide publishing leaders working together to improve publishing and their own business.

This next Year 2017 the Motovun Group will celebrate all these unique values, which were built up over 40 years and will work on making the future trustable!

I look forward to hosting you all in London for our next MGIP dinner in March and especially to seeing you in June at our traditional summer meeting in Portoros at the Adriatic coast where we will celebrate our 40th Anniversary in the Motovun Village where the Group was first established and which gave us our name:

- Lectures by experts will give answers to the trends we have to face
- Business meetings will create a market place between the members and the guests
- Everyone present will catch the Motovun spirit and apply for being an active member of Motovun Group of International Publishers!

This summer meeting will be useful for the pessimists. Those who create a “parachute” may become the optimists and those who create “planes” may fly over problems.

I wish you all a great dinner and a very good book fair, a very successful one I hope!