Thursday, August 09, 2007
110% the solution to A&R's predicament
I notice both the Sydney Morning Herald and Crikey have now posted online ARW Group Commercial Manager Charlie Rimmer's fast-becoming-legendary letter to the book retailer's 'unprofitable' suppliers (among which are some of the nation's finest book publishers). The ever-alert Australian Society of Authors has even called for a boycott of Angus & Robertson company stores. Some sympathy, please: it's not easy being squeezed between the demands of private equity and the heavy discounting of the DDS. I’ve been trying to think of a solution to A&R’s predicament and I think I’ve finally come up with something that won’t eat into the publishers’ margins. We have to make every book worth 110% of RRP. An extra 10% would keep everyone happy. Not only would this give A&R the 5% they seem to want to take anyway, but you could give the other 5% to the author and keep the ASA happy too. Sometimes the simplest solutions are the best.