For startups, the publishing industry is ripe for innovation

The publishing industry, and in particular the book publishing industry, has experienced a huge shift in the past decade. From disruptive products like e-readers & tablets, the mass appearance of blogs, and the dramatic growth in online video consumption, all have affected the behavior of readers and writers alike. Not only the consumption of books has changed, but also the way how they get distributed and promoted.

The Renew the Book Startup Competition is focused on entrepreneurs and startups that offer new solutions to promote, distribute and publish books. The deep dive program is based on the successful accelerator program Rockstart that has run since 2012. It is an immersive educational program of 40 days that will help participants

  • find product-solution fit
  • receive feedback from industry peers
  • build one’s network in the international publishing scene, and
  • learn the basics on how to build, grow and pitch a your business.

The program includes workshops & 1:1 sessions on customer development, value propositioning, and business modelling, and also pitch training. Deep Dive sessions will enable participants to set next actions for their most relevant challenges, and private events will connect them to the industry peers. Mentors, including serial entrepreneurs, international experts and professionals from both the publishing & technology industry, will be available to counsel startups during the program. More here

The General Publisher’s Association (GAU), as the initiator of this startup competition, is in a very unique position to help innovative startups. As an industry association, GAU can deliver value to startups on a broad scale, providing participants

  • access to all relevant players in the publishing industry
  • stakeholder and industry specific insights from publishers, authors, book-sellers, consumers, etc., and
  • the reach through their international networks to publishers across the globe


From a startup perspective, the publishing industry continues to grow, is lucrative and ripe for innovation

  1. The publishing market is huge. With $103B in annual revenue in 2014, this market is nearly 7x of the global music production and distribution market. 2.7B books were sold in 2014 showing people continue to spend money and time consuming them — a big plus compared to other industries.
  2. The scale of digital enables the publishing industry to grow. On the growth perspective, research forecasts a $8bn revenue growth until 2019, which is driven by the rise of new markets like India. Furthermore, the mass market is affected by the growth of new tech products that changes the way we buy and consume books. The rise of tablets and e-readers enables the publishing industry to change the way they engage with their consumers, and reach new target groups also at different areas of the world.
  3. Most people think the publishing industry has been slow to move to address the dramatic changes in the marketplace, which is a good time for innovators to spot opportunities and start a business. As the competition is lower than in a hot sector like online video streaming, the potential upside and chance of winning a big market share is higher.

The Renew the Book Startup Competition by the General Publisher’s Association (GAU) shows the motivation and the willingness to change from the inside — a unique advantage of the 2015 Renew the Book Startup Competition.

Publishing remains an impactful business. These days, entrepreneurs are always looking to generate a positive influence on our world, making it often the main reason why they started a company. While the ways we publish and consume books are changing due to technology, the stories themselves help us understand the world we live in. At Rockstart we strongly believe books have been and will stay important for us as human beings.

Money Alternatives @Reinvent Money 2015

Urban Transportation 2.0 @How_To-Web 2014