Italy’s Book Market Up 13.3 Percent Over 2019

Presented in Venice at the Mauri School, the 2022 report from Italy’s publishers shows gains over the pre-pandemic era, amid market shifts.

As the 40th annual Scuola per Librai Umberto e Elisabetta Mauri—the Mauri “school of booksellers”—reached its concluding conference sessions today (January 27) at the island of San Giorgio Maggiore in Venice, the Association of Italian Publishers (Associazione Italiana Editori, AIE) made its promised detailed 2022 report on the state of the Italian market.

Ricardo Franco Levi, president both to the AIE and to the Federation of European Publishers in Brussels, spoke to Publishing Perspectives about the “heavy investments” the publishers’ association is making in industry statistical research.

And then he proved it with a detailed, agile report that confirms  Italy as the sixth-ranked book-publishing market in the world after the United States, China, Germany, the United Kingdom, and France, and the fourth largest in Europe, with the UK counted as still a market in Europe.

One of the most interesting high-level looks shows us that Europe, including the post-Brexit United Kingdom, accounts for 59 percent of the international marketplace, with six of the 10 publishing groups holding European bases.

Keep in mind, of course that those groups include Penguin Random House, the parent company of which is Bertelsmann, at No. 3 in this listing. As provided for our preview of this 40th edition of the Mauri School program, top-line points announced by Levi included:

  • In 2022, the Italian market saw fiction and nonfiction decrease in sales revenues by 2.3 percent in comparison to 2021. When viewed against 2019, however, these combined sectors grew by 13.1 percent.
  • By unit volume, there was a decline of 2.4 percent in comparison to 2021 and a similar gain, 13.3 percent, over 2019.

For further reading: Publishing Perspectives, Porter Anderson: italys-book-market