When the first Krithi International Book fair launched in early 2018 the organizers were, to put it mildly, taken by surprise by the enthusiastic response. 700,000 turned out for the event, spending the USD equivalent of $2.6 million in ten days.
TNPS regular, then, won’t be too surprised to learn that the third Krithi fair, set to run for eleven days from February 6-16, is targetting revenue of $3.5 million this time around. That’s according to The Hindu, which reports sales expectations of 25 crore rupees (INR 25 million).
The 2020 event, organised by the Department of Cooperation, in association with Sahithya Pravarthaka Cooperative Society (SPCS), expects to field about 150 publishers.
The state of Kerala is widely regarded as India’s most literate state, but even so the Krithi book fair is not the biggest in the country, either by revenue or footfall.
Per a TNPS post in February of this year, just six weeks into the year and India had already seen millions of visitors spend millions of dollars on books at book fairs.
When looking at emerging book market valuations we need constantly to remind ourselves that a significant proportion of total book sales in countries like India happen outside the mainstream bricks & mortar and online sales environments we take for granted in the West.