As quoted in the show daily of this year’s Frankfurt Book Fair, Russ Grandinetti, Vice President for Kindle content with Amazon, delivered some useful information on Amazon’s Kindle content priorities at the Publishers Launch conference. Producing graphs to show that every other Western market so far had followed the same growth trajectories for Kindle publication as the U.S. and UK markets, and all of them could be expected to develop similarly, he also unveiled some surprising statistics about Kindle releases of bestselling authors across Europe. In the US, Grandinetti revealed, 98 percent of the top 1,000 authors have at least one Kindle title in print. In the UK, the figure is 95 percent; in Germany, 89 percent; in France, 71 percent; in Japan, 64 percent; and in Spain, only 46 percent.
Given the current French government’s strident anti-Amazon grandstanding, it’s no surprise to find out that only 5 percent of French digital titles are available via the English Amazon U.S. Kindle store, compared to 77 percent of Spanish titles and 51 percent of German ebook titles. And this despite the fact that Amazon’s sales of foreign titles to English-speaking markets have been doubling each year since 2009.
If Grandinetti is to be believed, then, there are still big sales opportunities out there waiting for non-English authors and publishers, if only they’d pick up the pace and capitalize on them.