London Book Fair Announces Its 2019 International Excellence Award Shortlists

In News by Porter Anderson

The shortlisted industry players and programs for this year’s London Book Fair International Excellence Awards are from Europe, the Americas, Asia, Africa, and Australasia.

At the London Book Fair International Excellence Awards (2017), produced in partnership with the UK’s Publishers Association. Luiz Schwarcz, publisher with Companhia das Letras of Brazil, accepts the program’s Lifetime Achievement Award presented by author Ian McEwan and London Book Fair chairman David Roche. Image: Midas PR

By Porter Anderson, Editor-in-Chief | @Porter_Anderson

Thomas: ‘Diverse Talent Working in Publishing Today’
There are 26 countries represented in the shortlists for the London Book Fair International Excellence Awards 2019 shortlists.

They have been announced to news media this morning (February 14), with 17 categories covering “ambassadors, innovative publishing, and ground-breaking initiatives” in the world publishing industry, and jurors in each category are specialists in their respective sector of the business.

The awards are produced annually by the fair in partnership with the UK’s Publishers Association, and winners this year will be announced at an invitation-only event on Tuesday evening, March 12, in the conference center complex at Olympia London.

While the program is reporting that Brazil, India, and the United States are the nations with the most shortlisted candidates for the honors, there’s an unusually strong showing from Africa this year—Botswana, Kenya, and Zambia are represented with one shortlisting each, and South African nominees have been shortlisted twice.

More nations with multiple shortlisted candidates for International Excellence Awards are:

  • USA (5)
  • Brazil (3)
  • India (3)
  • Canada (2)
  • France (2)
  • Germany (2)
  • Indonesia (10), the 2019 Market Focus nation at London Book Fair
Lotinga: ‘Publishing Markets Across the Globe’

Jacks Thomas

In a prepared statement on the news of the shortlists, London Book Fair director Jacks Thomas is quoted, saying, “The breadth of the sixth International Excellence Awards’ shortlist, with its impressive count of 26 countries, highlights how the global book industry is going from strength to strength.

“The nominees all showcase the diverse talent working in the publishing industry today, and I’m thrilled to give them the international platform at the book fair to showcase their success. I look forward to welcoming the shortlistees to the London Book Fair in March—best of luck to everyone.”

Stephen Lotinga

And for the Publishers Association, CEO Stephen Lotinga says, “We’re proud to celebrate publishing success at this year’s International Excellence Awards. The geographical diversity of the shortlist reflects the growing strength of publishing markets across the globe.

“As well as celebrating all of these global publishing ambassadors, we look forward to awarding the Inclusivity in Publishing Award to a UK publisher at the fair.”

Of note in terms of shortlisting counts, the Virtual Reading Gym in South Africa is nominated twice—first in the Educational Initiatives category, and also in the category of Educational Learning Resources, the latter supported by the China Publishing & Media Journal.

Events shortlisted in the Literary Festival of the Year category include Book Arsenal Literature Festival (Ukraine); International Literature Festival Utrecht (Netherlands); and Makassar International Writers Festival (Indonesia).

Bookstore of the Year category shortlisted retailers are BOA Bookstore (Vietnam); Fang Suo Commune (China); and Unity Books (Wellington) Ltd (New Zealand).

And a new award category has been added this year, generously recognizing journalists’ efforts in covering international publishing. The award for an International Book Trade Journalist is described by organizers as a shortlisted contest between Anja Sieg of Buchreport (Germany); Leonardo Neto of PublishNews (Brazil); and this reporter at Publishing Perspectives, which is operated from the States.

International Excellence Award 2019 Shortlists

Academic and Professional Publisher Award

  • De Gruyter (Germany)
  • Rutgers University Press (USA)
  • University of Michigan Press (USA)

Audiobook Publisher of the Year

  • Booklava (UAE)
  • Karadi Tales (India)
  • Macmillan Audio (USA)

Bookstore of the Year Award, sponsored by Gardners

  • BOA Bookstore (Vietnam)
  • Fang Suo Commune (China)
  • Unity Books (Wellington) Ltd (New Zealand)

Educational Initiatives Award

  • Tata Trusts (India)
  • Virtual Reading Gym (South Africa)
  • West Java Agency of Library and Archive (Indonesia)

Educational Learning Resources Award, supported by The China Publishing & Media Journal

  • Bookful by Inception (USA)
  • Pamegincius (Lithuania)
  • Virtual Reading Gym (South Africa)

New this year:
International Book Trade Journalist Award

  • Anja Sieg – Buchreport (Germany)
  • Leonardo Neto – PublishNews (Brazil)
  • Porter Anderson – Publishing Perspectives (USA)

Library of the Year Award

  • Espoo City Library (Finland)
  • Lubuto Library Partners (Zambia)
  • Parque Villa-Lobos Library (Brazil)

Literary Translation Initiative Award

  • Latvian Literature (Latvia)
  • The Lontar Foundation (Indonesia)
  • Tulika Publishers (India)

Literary Agent Award

  • Asta Trummel – Ministry of Culture of Estonia (Estonia)
  • Pierre Astier – Astier-Pecher Literary & Film Agency (France)
  • Yasmina Jraissati – RAYA The agency for Arabic literature (France)

Literary Festival Award

  • Book Arsenal Literature Festival (Ukraine)
  • International Literature Festival Utrecht (Netherlands)
  • Makassar International Writers Festival (Indonesia)

Rights Professional Award

  • Kyoko Ishigaki – Sekaibunka Publishing Inc. (Japan)
  • Rose Janssens – Clavis Publishing (Belgium)
  • Yuliani Liputo – PT Mizan Pustaka (Indonesia)

Eligible for entries from Market Focus Indonesia only:
Market Focus Indonesia Adult Trade Award

  • Educa Studio
  • Mizan
  • PT Bestari Buana Murni

Market Focus Indonesia Children’s, Young Adult and Education Award

  • Bentang Pustaka
  • Kepustakaan Populer Gramedia Publishing House
  • Noura Publishing

Eligible for entries from all countries, including the UK:
Accessible Books Consortium International Excellence Award: Publisher

  • Ediciones Godot (Argentina)
  • EDITORIAL 5 (Brazil)
  • Kogan Page Ltd (UK)

Accessible Books Consortium International Excellence Award: Initiative

  • BC Libraries Cooperative, National Network for Equitable Library Service (NNELS) (Canada)
  • Centre for Equitable Library Access (CELA) (Canada)
  • Companies and Intellectual Property Authority (CIPA) (Botswana)
  • eKitabu (Kenya)
  • Secretary general of Fondazione LIA (Italy)

Eligible for entries from the UK only:
Inclusivity in Publishing Award, supported by the Publishers Association

  • Emerald Publishing
  • Dialogue Books
  • Jacaranda Books

The winners of several other awards will also be presented on the night, including the Simon Master’s Chairman Award and the Association for Publishing Education (APE) Student Awards.

The London Book Fair Lifetime Achievement Award will also be presented at the ceremony.

At the London Book Fair International Excellence Awards (2016), produced in partnership with the UK’s Publishers Association. Image: London Book Fair


More from Publishing Perspectives on the London Book Fair is here, more from us on the International Excellence Awards is here, and more on publishing and book awards is here.

About the Author

Porter Anderson

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Porter Anderson has been named International Trade Press Journalist of the Year in London Book Fair's 2019 International Excellence Awards. He is Editor-in-Chief of Publishing Perspectives. He co-founded The Hot Sheet, a newsletter for trade and indie authors, which now is owned and operated by Jane Friedman. He formerly was Associate Editor for The FutureBook at London's The Bookseller. Anderson also has worked as a senior producer, editor, and anchor with CNN.com, CNN International, and CNN USA, and as an arts critic (National Critics Institute) with The Village Voice and Dallas Times Herald.