Politics and a 15% drop in sales in 2014 has prompted Eksmo to sell its stake in Ukraine’s Logos-Trans, which operates 50 Book Supermarket stores across the country.
In Russia, a recent tender for school textbooks was so lopsided, with Prosveshcheniye dominating, that several competitors are already announcing lay offs.
France’s Hachette Livre has extended its stake in Azbuka Atticus, Russia’s ninth largest publishing conglomerate.
Germany’s Taschen has a renewed focus on Russia and signed new deals with local book distributors Logosphere, Magma and Jupiter.
Russia is looking at investing some $210 million to foster more translation and counter the decline in interest in its literature as a result of poor, post-Soviet PR.
Sales of Russian books in the Ukraine have plummeted in 2014 and the Ukrainian government is looking at passing legislation to curtail imports further.
More consolidation has hit the Russian book market as Oleg Novikov, the owner of AST and Eksmo, has agreed to purchase Drofa, a leading education publisher.
The Russian government plans to fund 50 all-digital libraries, establish a national ebook library and transition schools to ebooks over the next several years.
The government of Belarus is intent on supporting its national literature and is offering the industry some $150 million in subsidies to keep it going.
Leading Ukrainian and Russian writers are trading barbs over the recent annexation of the Crimea by Russia and the evolving situation in Ukraine.