When Will Local E-book Editions Compete with English Counterparts?

In Discussion by Hannah Johnson

As more readers turn to English-language e-books because of availability or price, when will local markets catch up to compete?

By Hannah Johnson

e-book and print books

In an interview with Publishing Perspectives, Eva Bonnier said that English-language book exports “can be a problem” for publishers in markets like Sweden where many people buy and read English books. If it takes a year for a Swedish publisher to put out a translation, many readers have likely already bought the English version and won’t buy the translation.

The export of English-language e-books to markets like Sweden is creating demand among readers for e-books, which is good news for publishers facing flat or declining print sales. However, the rise of English as a global language along with the huge selection of English-language e-books means that US-based platforms like Amazon and Apple are attractive options to many readers around the world.

When will the selection and availability of local e-book editions increase to a level that will attract readers to buy from local publishers or platforms? Or should these markets simply wait for Amazon to come in? When will local e-book editions and platforms compete with English-language editions for readers?

Tell us what you think in the comments.

About the Author

Hannah Johnson


Hannah Johnson is the publisher of international book industry magazine Publishing Perspectives, which provides daily information and news about book markets around the world. In addition to building partnerships with international cultural and trade organizations, she works with the Frankfurt Book Fair to organize and support a number of its overseas initiatives. Hannah has also worked as the managing editor for an online media company, The Hooch Life, focused on craft distillers and cocktail experts. Prior to that, she worked as a project manager for the Frankfurt Book Fair’s New York office, managing various business and marketing activities.