Category: Uncategorized

A New Creative Export Strategy for Creative Industries has been launched

The Honourable Mélanie Joly announced today, on June 26, 2018 a Government of Canada’s investment of $125 million over 5 years to implement Canada’s first Creative Export Strategy. And this is great news for our project:

The development of creative markets also relies on Canada’s participation in international events to increase the export capacity of Canadian creative industries, as with Canada’s participation as Guest of Honour at the Frankfurt Book Fair—the world’s largest book fair—in 2020.

For more detail, please find the complete release here.

Photo: Dominik Scythe on Unsplash

ACP’s Mentorship Program

ACP’s Mentorship program is an ongoing program that is very popular among the members. It matches members from across the country with industry experts for a one full-day consultation session on the topic of their choice, specific to their company’s needs. Mentorship sessions usually take place in the mentee’s office.

Prior to the session, the mentee fills out an application and pre-consultation survey and chooses their preferred mentor. The survey is then sent to the mentor and, if they are available, they will contact you to develop a more detailed agenda and agree upon a mutually convenient date for the session.

Mentorships are offered at a low price of $250. For more information, please visit  ACP’s website or contact Jazz Cook at

Livre Canada Books and Canada FBM2020 Trade Mission to Germany

Livres Canada Books and Canada FBM2020 will be in Berlin and Munich from July 9-13, 2018 to conduct a Trade Mission on the German book market. 
An impressive delegation of 23 publishing houses and 2 literary agencies will participate, including Biblioasis,BookThugCaitlin PressCoach House BooksComme des géantsCooke Agency International,  ECW PressÉditions de la PastèqueÉditions HurtubiseÉditions les malinsÉditions Québec-AmériqueFernwood Publishing,Great Plains PublicationsGroupe HommeInvisible PublishingKids Can PressLeméac ÉditeurLux ÉditeurNimbus PublishingOrca Book PublishersRocky Mountain BooksSecond Story PressUniversity of British Columbia PressUniversity of Toronto Press and Westwood Creative Artists

The information and experiences garnered on the mission will be shared by the delegates through a webinar aimed at publishers who were unable to participate in the mission.More detail on the Mission:

For more information, please contact

Photo: Camilla Bundgaard on Unsplash

Roadmap to 2020: Building Your Rights Business

In partnership with the Ontario Media Development Corporation (OMDC), a professional working day in Toronto was organized on March 21st: Roadmap 2020: Building Your Rights Business.

The purpose of this professional development day was to provide an overview of selling rights by experienced publishers in the lead up to the Frankfurt Book Fair in 2020 when Canada is Guest of Honour. Feedback was very good and the day was filmed to reach other publishers across Canada.

For more information, consult the program schedule and speakers’ biographies

The conferences were filmed to reach publishers across Canada. 

Click on the following links to view the conferences:

Keynoteby Sarah McLachlan, President and Publisher of the House of Anansi Press and President of Groundwood Books.

Panel: Starting From Scratchby Parisa Michailidis, Responsible for international rights for Firefly Books; Hazel Millar, Co-publisher at Book*hug; Adrienne Tang, Rights Director at Kids Can Press. Moderator: Gillian Fizet, Executive Director of Canada FBM2020.

Presentation: Let’s Make A Dealby Barbara Howson, Vice-President, Sales and Licensing at House of Anansi and Groundwood Books.

The Guest of Honor Experienceby Kevin Chapman, Publisher of Upstart Press in Auckland and as former president of PANZ, he led that country’s charge as Guest of Honour at Frankfurt 2012.

Overview of the German Market, Part 1by Claudia Seeber, Trade Commissioner for Arts and Cultural Industries at the Canadian Embassy in Berlin.

Overview of the German Market, Part 2by, Eva-Marie von Hippel, the Editorial Director for Berlin Verlag.

The Power of the Pitchby Saffron Beckwith, industry-veteran and President at Ampersand Inc. and Peter Hill-Field, director of sales and marketing at Canadian Manda Group.

Canada FBM2020 would like to thank the OMDC for its generous financial support of Roadmap to 2020. It would also like to thank the Department of Canadian Heritage for making it possible to film the sessions. 

Canada Council for the Arts :: Announcement

The Frankfurt 2020: Incentive for Purchasing Translation Rights and for Publishing in German has launched!

As per the announcement: 

“The Canada Council, in partnership with the Department of Canadian Heritage, is setting up a one-time initiative for the translation, and in some cases, the production and promotion of Canadian works into German. For the duration of the initiative, the Council will fund the translation of works by Canadian authors even in genres normally outside its mandate.”

For more information on this translation incentive brought to you by the Canada Council for the Arts and the Department of Canadian Heritage, click here:

Submit titles on our Online Rights Catalogue

With the Incentive underway, now is the time for Canadian publishers and literary agents to participate in Canada FBM2020’s Online Rights Catalogue for the German market. 

Submit today! For more details see below:

Canadian publishers and literary agents: make yourselves better known to German publishers! 

List your titles for free in the FBM2020 rights catalogue for the German market.

A Noteworthy Brainstorming Session

It was with some trepidation, as well as much excitement and enthusiasm, that members of our Brand Image Committee met on the grey morning of 24 November for the first time, in the cozy Café Chez l’Éditeur at the Montreal offices of publisher Québec-Amérique.

Devanture du Café chez l'Éditeur

The committee is made up of eight members from widely varied backgrounds and all parts of the country. Coming together and meeting one another for the first time were contemporary artist Michael Nicoll Yagulhanaas from British Columbia; writer Harold Johnson, Saskatchewan; Wendy Whitebear of the University of Regina Press, Saskatchewan; Chélanie Beaudin-Quintin of Les Éditions Michel Quintin, Quebec; Caroline Fortin of Les Éditions Québec-Amérique, Quebec; Antoine Tanguay of Les Éditions Alto, Quebec; literary agent Marilyn Biderman, Ontario; and Judy Brunsek of Owlkids, Ontario.

De g. à d. : Chélanie, Harold, Marilyn, Wendy, Michael, Judy, Caroline et Antoine.

The meeting, which generated a lively dialogue, was organized as a brainstorming session and led by Hanneke Ronken and Anne-Laure Mathieu, two social and cultural innovation strategists with The Art of Connexion. Theirs was a worthy challenge: in the course of the morning, committee members had to come up with a vision, values and a goal based on our Canadian identity.

Different Canadian images were quickly singled out for their relative strengths and weaknesses and the associations they have for other cultures. Little by little, as the discussion ranged beyond ideas of nature, easy-going Canadians, hockey and maple leaves, the deeper, more authentic values started to emerge, together with the trends and contrasts that will guide the design firm assigned to create Canada’s slogan and logo for the Frankfurt Book Fair in 2020.

We expect that out of this meeting will come a highly original and very memorable concept, in what is definitely a process to follow!

Photos: Judy Brunsek et Isabelle Gauvin

Frankfurt Executives in Canada

At its annual general meeting of 14 September 2017, ANEL, the national association of French-language book publishers, was very pleased to welcome two envoys from the Frankfurt Book Fair. President Juergen Boos and Thomas Minkus, Vice-President for North American Affairs based in New York, made a presentation on Canada’s nomination as the international book event’s Guest of Honour for 2020.

Publishers attending the meeting gave their guests a warm reception and had an opportunity to ask their questions about the project. Caroline Fortin and Gillian Fizet, respectively the President and Executive Director of Canada FBM2020, used the occasion to explain their plans in detail and invite the publishers to participate in preparations for the 2020 fair.

Left to right in the photograph are Thomas Minkus; José Borghino, Secretary General of the International Publishers Association (IPA); Gillian Fizet; Juergen Boos; Caroline Fortin and Richard Prieur, ANEL’s Executive Director. 

Canada’s book industry is gearing up for Frankfurt 2020

By Giulia Trentacosti — Article first published in July 2017

As part of our Publishing Industry Insight Series, this month we are taking a closer look at Canada’s book industry, focusing especially on the country’s future participation as Guest of Honour at the 2020 Frankfurt Book Fair.

The occasion will mark the first major international project jointly run by English-language and French-language stakeholders, and will also include representatives of the Indigenous peoples. The project is part of a wider strategy intended to increase the international visibility of Canadian publishers and authors, and aims mainly at expanding Canada’s export channels and rights sales. The appointed organizing committee, Canada FBM2020, is formed by representatives of both English-language and French-language publishing associations – Association of Canadian Publishers (ACP) and Association nationale des éditeurs de livres (ANEL) – and relies on the support of a number of key industry organizations such export agencies Livres Canada Books and Québec Edition.

Some figures about publishing in Canada:

  • Ontario and Quebec are by far the most active regions, accounting for over 93.3% of annual revenues in 2014;
  • Consumer research shows that 52% of Canadians buy their books in brick-and mortar shops, while 45% buy them online;
  • The most popular format is the paperback (preferred by 55% of readers), followed by hardcovers (25%), e-books (17%) and lastly audiobooks (2%);
  • For 64% of Canadian publishers digital sales account for 1-10% of revenues, while for 18% of them e-books represent between 11-20% of revenues. For more detailed info on the state of the digital market see here;
  • The ration of foreign-owned multinationals compared to Canadian-owned companies is 30.2% to 69.8%.[Sources: Stat CanadaOntario Media Development Corporation & Book Net Canada]

Although, most of the largest publishing conglomerates (including Harper Collins, Penguin Random House, Simon & Schuster and Hachette) still retain operations in Canada, over the last decades the Canadian Government has been fostering the growth of Canadian-owned publishing companies, while also intervening to regulate foreign investments through the Investment Canada Act. This sort of “nationalist” policy has encouraged the growth of locally-owned companies, which are now estimated to be around 1,500 (3x more than 25 years ago) and which are responsible for approximately 80% of the national publishing output.

The government’s effort to strengthen the national publishing sector is not limited to regulating foreign-ownership, but also to financially supporting and promoting local authors. At the federal level, publishers and authors have access to a variety of funding schemes, including the Canada Book Fund and the Canada Council for the Arts, as well as various others regional subsidies.

To find out more about Canada’s Guest of Honour presentation for the 2020 Frankfurt Book Fair and about the general state of the publishing industry we interviewed Gillian Fizet, Executive Director of the Canada FBM2020 Committee.

Giulia: Canada is going to be the Guest of Honour at the Frankfurt Book Fair in 2020. Can you anticipate something about the presentation? What are the main objectives of your participation?

Gillian: Since taking on the role of Executive Director of CANADA FBM2020, the non-profit entity tasked with managing, on behalf of the Canadian book industry, in French and in English, the Canada as Guest of Honour (GoH) program at the 2020 Frankfurt Book Fair, my interactions with members of the Canadian publishing industry have highlighted just how much this project excites and interests our colleagues. The support for the project is indeed widespread, coast to coast.

Our main objectives consist of raising Canada’s profile on the international publishing scene, increasing export sales into Germany and elsewhere in the lead up to 2020 and beyond (we’ve set a target of 200 titles to be translated into German by 2020), and providing publishers with the tools and resources required to enter the international market for the first time.

A number of activities are planned for the coming two years, including:

  • Development of a translation support program for translation of books to German, in partnership with our federal funding partners;
  • Design and production of translation Catalogue of Canadian-authored titles to launch in time for the 2017 Frankfurt Book Fair (FBF);
  • Release of a Literary Profile of Canada, a marketing tool to inform and promote potential partners about Canada’s diverse publishing landscape, in time for FBF 2017;
  • Consultation sessions between publishers and German market consultant to educate Canadians on the German market and advise them on which titles to push forward;
  • Planning of a Fellowship of German editors to Canada;
  • Planning of a Fellowship of Canadian editors to Germany;
  • Organizing a delegation of Canadian authors to attend and participate in the goh program in 2020
  • Organizing a vibrant and dynamic program showcasing Canada’s literary and cultural talent throughout Germany in 2020
  • Professional development and networking opportunities for participating to strengthen business efforts and opportunities in the lead of to FBF 2020 

Giulia: What would you say are the main challenges and the main opportunities for Canadian publishers at the moment?

Gillian: The changing Canadian retail landscape is a constant challenge for Canadian publishers. With the presence of fewer and fewer major chain book stores and the ongoing closure of independent booksellers, and not to mention the distribution of American and French titles into the Canadian marketplace, it’s a tough playing field for Canadian publishers. Changes to the copyright law in 2012 have also greatly impacted the industry, resulting in significant loss of licensing revenue for publishers selling into the educational market.

These challenges are encouraging more and more publishers to turn their efforts towards export initiatives — whether it’s establishing direct sales channels for the distribution of finished books into the U.S., U.K., France and other francophone regions in the world, or selling foreign rights. The eBook market continues to be robust and healthy, and many publishers are seeing opportunities in the audiobooks market.

Giulia: In what ways does the government support the industry?

Gillian: We do not have fixed book pricing in Canada. Except for one province, there is no provincial or territorial sales tax on books. Canadian-owned publishers have access to complimentary funding programs from various levels of government and arms-length agencies, who support operational, marketing, export, digital and professional activities.

Giulia: Are Canadian authors successful abroad in terms of rights sales?

Gillian: Books are the second largest Canadian cultural export behind film and video, and represent approximately 20% of all cultural goods exported. That said, it is widely agreed that there remains greater opportunity to increase the number of Canadian-authored works being sold abroad. Providing publishers with the tools and resources to build international business relationships, ensuring greater discoverability of Canadian books, and building market intelligence, are some of the key initiatives being taken on to expand rights sales of Canadian-authored titles.

Giulia: What about export to other French-speaking and English-speaking markets?

Gillian: For Canadian French-language publishers, France is the largest market and accounts for the majority of export sales. For English-language publishers, the U.S. is hands-down the largest market, and accounts for the majority of export sales, with the UK and Australia not far behind.

Giulia: What is the role of literary agents in Canada? Would you say that they have the same importance as in the US?

Gillian: Canadian literary agents are an important component of the English-language Canadian publishing industry. They not only play a role in discovering and representing home-grown Canadian-talent, but also contribute on the international rights front. Early this year, thirty-eight Canadian literary agents from 13 agencies announced the formation of the Professional Association of Canadian Literary Agents (PACLA), whose aim is to advocate for authors, and also to provide professional development and standards of practice for agents. There are however, very few French-Canadian literary agents representing French-language authors. 

2 Seas Agency  handles foreign rights on behalf of an exciting variety of publishers, literary agents and a select number of authorsfrom around the world, and is exclusive film & tv scout for Atlas Entertainment.

Premiere: Canada to be Guest of Honour at the Frankfurt Book Fair 2020

A festival for English and French-language literature from the far north.

Yesterday (October 6th, 2016), Juergen Boos, Director of the Frankfurt Book Fair, and The Honourable Mélanie Joly, Minister of Canadian Heritage, signed the contract for Canada’s participation as Guest of Honour at the Frankfurt Book Fair 2020 (14-18 October 2020).This appearance as Guest of Honour in Frankfurt is Canada’s first major international project supported jointly by English and French-language publishers and authors. Authors from both language areas as well as literary representatives of the First Nations are expected in Frankfurt.The Frankfurt Book Fair 2020 Committee (CanadaFBF2020), which will be involved in theorganisation of the appearance, is made up of Canadian book publishers, the Association of Canadian Publishers (ACP) and the Association nationale des éditeurs de livres (ANEL), and is supported by the export associations Livres Canada Books and Québec Edition.

Juergen Boos, Director of the Frankfurt Book Fair, said:

“There is strong international interest in learning more about Canadian publishers, authors, culture and media. Canada brings to the world stage a strong commitment to its bilingual tradition and embraces the diverse immigrant cultures that contribute to its society. We are pleased that Canada accepts this invitation to showcase its rich literary, cultural and linguistic heritage to global industry representatives.”

According to the Honourable Mélanie Joly:

“Our Government is committed to ensuring that readers everywhere have access to a wide range of Canadian-authored books, and I look forward to showcasing Canada’s book industry—as well as our country’s artistic and cultural sector—at the Frankfurt Book Fair in 2020. This is a fantastic opportunity to enable Canada’s artists and cultural entrepreneurs to maximize their full export potential, to help increase their competitive position on the international stage, and to ensure long-term sustainability, which will contribute to Canada’s overall economic and social prosperity.”

During the signing ceremony, Caroline Fortin of Éditions Québec-Amérique and President of the CanadaFBF2020 Committee, said:

“The Canadian publishing industry has worked together for the past three years on this project, so it is with great enthusiasm that we welcome this fantastic news. The Frankfurt Book Fair is the international hub of the publishing world and being its Guest of Honour will provide extraordinary opportunities to showcase our world class literature, books, and Canadian culture.”

An overview of the Canadian book market

The number of Canadian publishers has tripled in the last 25 years:1,500 Canadian  publishers, including numerous independent publishing houses, produce and distribute some 80 per cent of the books written in Canada.The publishing products of 300 publishing houses generate 95 per cent of total sales.The Canadian publishing industry produces 10,000 titles by Canadian authors annually.64.6 per cent of total sales of books and e-books are generated in the province of Ontario (English speaking), while 29.9 per cent of sales occur in Québec (French speaking).In 2010, English-language books generated 77.8 per cent of total sales, while titles in French accounted for 22.2 per cent of sales.A particular feature of the Canadian market is the fact that major multinational publishing groups such as HarperCollins, Penguin Random House and Hachette maintain their own branch offices in Canada, serving the English-language market from there. The ratio of Canadian to multinational publishing houses is 69.8 per cent to 30.2 per cent. In other words, Canadian publishers compete with other groups.E-books account for about 17 per cent of books sold. For most publishers, e-books represent a 20 per cent share of their sales. In 2014, 93 per cent of publishers offered e-books, and roughly half of them made 50 per cent of all their titles available as e-books.

About the Frankfurt Book Fair

The Frankfurt Book Fair is the international publishing industry’s biggest trade fair – with 7,100 exhibitors from more than 100 countries, around 275,000 visitors, over 4,000 events and approximately 10,000 accredited journalists – including 2,000 bloggers – in attendance.It also gathers key players from other media, including the film and games industries. Since 1976, the Book Fair has featured an annual Guest of Honour country, whichshowcases its book market, literature and culture to attendees in a variety of ways.The Frankfurt Book Fair organises the participation of German publishers at around20 international book fairs and hosts trade events throughout the year in major international markets. With its Business Club, the Frankfurt Book Fair offers essentialservices and an ideal setting for the activities of publishers, entrepreneurs, pioneers, experts and visionaries.The Frankfurt Book Fair is a subsidiary of the German Publishers & Booksellers Association. 

Nicole St-Jean, Caroline Fortin, Matt Williams