The Penguin Group is the second largest trade book publisher in the world with separate divisions located in the United States, Ireland, New Zealand, India, Australia, Canada, China and South Africa. This month, Edward Nawotka wrote in Publishing Perspectives that Penguin India launched its first e-book titles. Ananth Padmanabhan, Vice-President, Sales, Penguin Books India, said, “The idea behind this is to basically catch up on the digital model of publishing. While the current tranche consists of 240 Indian titles, which includes all the new books published in 2012, we are planning on pushing out close to 800 titles by the end of the year.”
By 2013, Penguin India plans to publish all books simultaneously in digital and print format. Padmanabhan expects e-books to account for 5% of the company’s revenue by the end of the year and 15% by the third year. According to the Bureau of Economic Analysis, 50% of Indians surveyed said they would buy an electronic book in the next year.
At this point, software piracy and digital rights are issues still being sorted out with Indian retailers. Padmanabhan is hopeful that they will have something solid soon.