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UK ebook sales rise 20% to £180m
Figures boosted by Amazon's Kindle and popularity of Stephen Fry and Stieg Larsson titles

The growing popularity of digital readers such as Amazon's Kindle and ebook titles by authors including Stephen Fry and Stieg Larsson helped boost UK sales of digital book products by 20% to £180m last year.

The Publishers Association, the trade body that represents companies that account for about 70% of the UK publishing market, said total sales – including digital products and physical books – increased by 2% year on year in 2010 to £3.1bn.

Growth in digital product sales – including ebooks, downloads and audiobooks sold direct to consumers and academic and professional sales to schools and institutions – helped cover a 3% fall in the volume of physical books.

The Publishers Association found the total value of digital sales from data supplied by members for its annual yearbook was £120m last year, 38% higher than in 2009.

However, the association claims when the figures are extrapolated for the whole UK market sales rose about 20% from £150m to £180m year on year, taking account the 30% of the industry that are not members of the Publishers Association.

"Digital publishing is growing at an impressive rate in whichever part of the sector you choose to look," said the Publishers Association chief executive, Richard Mollet.

"Academic and professional publishing, which embraced digital platforms over a decade ago, continues to lead the field. But now that technology is putting ereading devices into consumers' hands, we are starting to see the rapid growth of digital sales in this area too, as consumer publishers develop digital formats to reach wider audiences."

For the full article

The Guardian