Children’s Books in Italy: Pre-Bologna Statistics

Ahead of Bologna Children’s Book Fair, Italian publishers release statistics on the 2024 Frankfurt guest of honor’s children’s book sector.

‘Children’s Books: An Italian Excellence’

The Bologna Children’s Book Fair (April 8 to 11), will run again this year concomitantly with two “brand extension” programs, Bologna Licensing Trade Fair/Kids and Bologna Book Plus.

In an interesting round of statistics released on February 28th by the Association of Italian Publishers (Associazione Italiana Editori, AIE), members of the international press corps are being told that in 2023 the Italian children’s market grew by 2.1 percent over its 2022 stance, with cover-price sales of some €291.6 million (US$315.3 million). That total includes €273.9 million in text-and-illustration titles, and €17.8 million (US$19.2 million) in comic books for readers aged 14 and younger.

In terms of translation and international publication rights, better than one out of every three rights sales of Italian content is a title in the children’s and young readers’ sector, according to AIE president Innocenzo Cipolletta.

“These numbers tell, on the one hand” Cipolletta says, “the fundamental contribution to internationalization made by this sector and by the Bologna Children’s Book Fair in particular, with which we have been proud to collaborate for years. And on the other hand, [these statistics] are one of the reasons why Guest of Honor Italy at the 2024 Frankfurter Buchmesse (October 16 to 20) will dedicate ample space to children’s books, an Italian excellence. All this will be discussed in Bologna, thanks to the initiatives of ‘Destination Frankfurt.’ But we will also deal with the promotion of reading, artificial intelligence, comics crafts.”

For additional reading: Porter Anderson at publishingperspectives/childrens-books-in-italy

Photo: Innocenzo Cipoletta/ Publishing Perspectives, Porter Anderson