Next year marks our 10th birthday, so as a rather extravagant birthday present to ourselves, we’re celebrating the occasion by launching our own national sales team – the first that Australian publishing has seen this century! The sales team of nine staff will enable us to have regular in-person meetings with 600 booksellers across Australia. We’ll begin the recruitment process for sales roles very soon and the team will be fully operational from January 2023, selling April 2023 titles.
This will be first new sales force in Australian publishing since 1998 – which, just to give the Millennials and Zoomers context, was a year when Pauline Pantsdown and The Living End topped the music charts, Luke Davies’s Candy and Morris Gleitzman’s Bumface were published to great acclaim, and logging onto the internet involved unplugging your landline telephone!
A lot has changed in a quarter of a century, but our desire to connect with booksellers in real life has only grown.
‘Affirm Press launched as a full-time enterprise in 2013 with the twin ambitions of focusing exclusively on Australian content and selling directly to as many booksellers as possible. Somewhat audaciously for a publisher of our size, we decided to sell directly to key accounts and at head office level, while partnering with the sales teams at bigger publishers to reach independent booksellers. This strategy facilitated our rapid expansion, and we are excited to mark our 10th anniversary by appointing our own dedicated sales team that will enable us to connect directly with, better support, and be inspired by the independent booksellers who are the lifeline of our business,’ said Martin Hughes, Affirm Press’s CEO and co-owner.
The Affirm Press national sales team will be led by Affirm Press’s Sales Director, Keiran Rogers. It will comprise nine staff: two reps covering NSW and ACT, two covering VIC and TAS, one in QLD, one WA, one in SA, and an in-house rep for regional and specialist accounts.
Affirm Press will continue to be serviced by Alliance Distribution Services, and Hachette NZ will continue selling Affirm Press titles in New Zealand.
Keiran Rogers, Sales Director and co-owner of Affirm Press said:
‘Creating our own sales team is a measure of our appreciation for and confidence in Australian booksellers, and we want to work with booksellers as closely as possible to ensure that our independent sector thrives and remains the envy of the publishing world. We are excited about the future prospects of bookselling in Australia, and want to be a driver of growth and innovation. Our plan for the next stage of expansion is to increase the sales of our annual list of around 100 quality books through a stronger retail presence, rather than increase the number of books we publish. We currently represent three international publishers and, in time, we plan to grow that representation both locally and internationally.
‘We’d also like to publicly thank the larger publishers who have helped us with sales partnerships over the years – especially the fabulous team and sales reps at Hachette, who have been instrumental in getting us to this milestone.’
The launch will be supported with a series of bookseller events in capital cities from 27 September – 12 October. Booksellers should contact Affirm Press for more information about these enjoyable evenings.
Stay tuned for more news and job postings to come!