The World From Another View - Small And Non-US Publishers Going Global

Tobias Nielsén (Density (of Volante))
Location: Duffy/Columbia Level:

Tobias Nielsén, knowledge evangelist and CEO of the research-based European publisher Volante, shares some lessons learned trying to go international when your local market is small.

US and other English-language publishers – and distributors – take a bigger share of our national market every year. How can we strike back?

In the recent year we have seen publishing firms from various countries translating titles to English and, with the help of aggregators, launching them in the major ebook stores. Consequently, a global publishing firm can be based anywhere. In this model, there is no need of agents. (Or is it?)

It is a crowded market place – so an important question is how can you stand out? This presentation will itemize trends and lessons learned of how to succeed on an international market. The challenges are also based on other Swedish publishing firms experiences.

  • Digital-first vs. physical books.
  • Direct publishing vs. aggregators
  • Local vs. international appearance
  • Niches vs. the big market shares
  • Densified format (e.g. Kindle Singles) vs. the traditional format

Volante is a front-runner in the Scandinavian market with R&D that has inspired the big publishing houses to redefine their digital strategies. We have introduced the ‘book single’ to Sweden and experimented with dynamic pricing and digital covers.

Our imprint, DENSITY, will take off this year. DENSITY is about sharing knowledge in terms of ‘densified’ non-fiction literature, in a specific format that we have developed with our network of researchers and journalists. This includes a lot of effort to develop the ebook cover.

Photo of Tobias Nielsén

Tobias Nielsén

Density (of Volante)

Tobias Nielsén is the CEO and publishing director of the research-based publishing firm Volante based in Stockholm, Sweden.

He has a Master’s Degree from studies at Stockholm School of Economics, Sweden, and Columbia Business School in New York City, USA. He has a background as a journalist.

Mr. Nielsén has been a keynote speaker at conferences in Hong Kong, New York, Beijing and London.


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