Publishing industry in 2022: Finding opportunities from digital transformation

Digital transformation was identified to be the focus of the publishing industry in the coming time, in order to make electronic publishing a spearhead of development.
Publishing industry in 2022: Finding opportunities from digital transformation ảnh 1 Students are reading books at a school library (Photo: SGGP)
The Authority of Publication, Printing and Distribution held a conference on the publication and publication of publications in 2022 on March 23 in Ho Chi Minh City to review the publication work in 2021 and set a set many tasks for the development of the industry in the current context.
According to Mr. Nguyen Nguyen, Director of the Publication Department, the application of science - technology has now been paid more attention by publishers, the total number of publishers with confirmed registration of electronic publishing activities has increased to 12 publishers, up by 33 percent of a total of 57 publishers.
Some publishers have not yet registered for electronic publishing; nevertheless, with governing bodies’ assistance, publishers Vietnam Women's Publishing House, Publishing House of Science and Technology are implementing large investment projects in technology associated with the digital transformation plan.
Ms. Ngo Thi My Hanh, Deputy Director - Deputy Editor-in-Chief of the Information and Communication Publishing House, said that digital transformation can bring increasingly clear changes in the stages of publishing, communication and distribution. According to her, digital transformation has erased all limits and boundaries of space and time to open a new turning point in the speed of sharing and spreading.
The stages of traditional publishing will be greatly reduced so that the work can reach the most readers in the fastest time. The process chain, from the creation of work to publication to readers, can be tailored to many different business models.
Like other sectors, the publishing industry had to face the negative impacts of the Covid-19 pandemic in 2021. However, publishers have made great efforts from grasping the market and readers' needs to adapting quickly to transform business forms, propagandize and promote books. As a result, the total revenue and profit of the publishers both increased compared to 2020.
Data from the Authority of Publication, Printing and Distribution (hereinafter referred to as the Department of Publication for short) shows that by the end of December 31, 2021, the total number of publications deposited in the deposit is 32,948 publications with more than 400 million copies. In which, publications in print form are 29,274 books with 350 million copies, electronic publications are 2,300 publications with an estimated 25 million copies, an increase of 16 times compared to 2020. Total industry revenue reached nearly VND2,997 billion, up by 12.4 percent.
Noticeably, last year, the publication of content related to the prevention of the Covid-19 epidemic, praising the affection and enthusiasm of the team working in epidemic prevention and the economic recovery during the epidemic was actively published.
Amongst the work published in 2021 were many valuable books that have received high praise from public opinion. Some publications attract many readers and are printed in large numbers such as Eternal Life with 340,000 copies, the Alchemist with 310,000 copies, Journey to the East with 87,000 copies, the power of subconscious with 62,000 copies, Sapiens - A Brief History of Humankind with 44,000 copies, From Good to Great with 33,000 copies.
In the field of publishing, according to statistics of the Publication Department, roughly 1,442 publishing houses have been set up nationwide. Of 1,442 publishing houses, 551 publishing business establishments are enterprises, and 18 others engaged in book import and export activities.
In 2021, the industry will publish over 225 million publications, decreasing by 31.8 percent, and collect a revenue of VND2,900 billion, down by 21.6 percent.
According to Mr. Nguyen Nguyen, despite many efforts, the average number of publications generally is still low, about 11,000 copies including textbooks.
In addition, the quality of the books is generally not high, there are still many books with erroneous and incorrect contents; therefore, authorities forced publishers to reclaim whereas there are few books of high value and pervasiveness, especially books on political science, science, and technology.
After the pause, the Young Publishing House will reinvest in the e-book segment the next time. Currently, in addition to paper books, this unit is promoting the distribution of audiobooks through the applications of Fonos and Voiz FM as the publisher realized that readers' habits have shifted to e-books and audiobooks, which are voice recordings of the text of a book that readers can listen to rather than read.
Subsequently, in the immediate future, the publisher will invest in the technical part for Ebook, to better serve readers on the platform, shared Ms. Phan Thi Thu Ha, Director of Young Publishing House.

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