Indian publishing to be Rs 800 bn industry by 2024

India, which has the second largest publishing infrastructure among the developing countries next only to China, is expected to see this grow to Rs 800 billion by 2024 from Rs 500 billion in 2019, a new report from EY Parthenon said last Wednesday.

Indian publishing is the key enabler for education attainment, continuous learning, and recreation, promoter of Indian culture, values and excellence and is one of the country’s largest media-related industries, larger than print media (newspapers and magazines), digital media (social media, apps, online streaming, music, and games), filmed entertainment (movies), and radio and music, the report, drawn up in collaboration with the Association of Publishers in India (API), said.

Considering the key stakeholders in the publishing industry, India is dominated by educational book publishing with a small share of trade book publishing. There are some 250 million students at the school level and more than 35 million at the higher education level.

These students rely primarily on books as the medium for learning. Thus, the Indian publishing industry makes an integral part of the Indian education system. Further, the report also highlights that there is a strong correlation between access to sources of published information, such as scientific journals and research papers and the quality of research output. The industry helps with the dissemination of scientific research and plays an essential role in the advancement of R&D.

The publishing industry promotes Indian culture, values and excellence by enabling the continued production of knowledge in regional languages. It also capitalizes on the opportunity of continued adoption of digital platforms such as e-books in regional languages to address diverse audience segments.

Though there is a paradigm shift towards the adoption of digital media, print books currently dominate (90 per cent) the publishing landscape in India. However, e-books and audiobooks are expected to be critical growth drivers and have a promising future in the industry.

New business models including online retail, subscriptions, bundle packages, open-access resources, and self-publishing are emerging in the industry. This provides innovative channels to reach a broader target audience and thereby changing the mode of operations for publishers.

One of the biggest opportunities for the Indian publishing industry is the National Education Policy (NEP). The shift would lead to the new curriculum and publishing of associated teaching-learning material where the publishing industry will have to provide textbooks and supplementary resources that enable parents, students, and teachers to adapt to the new curriculum, the report says.

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