Boos: Now is the time for start-ups

The director of the Frankfurt Book Fair has said start-ups will capitalise on the trade, as the organisers revealed exhibitor numbers were down 2.1% on 2010.

In total, 7,384 exhibitors from 106 countries attended last week's fair, with more than 3,200 events attracting 280,194 visitors, which was marginally up on last year (279,325).

Juergen Boos, director of Frankfurt Book Fair, said the fair was host to the "experimentation of new ideas", across e-reading devices, new forms of storytelling and multimedia formats. Boos said: "This is now the time for start-ups, and the book industry is in a positive mood for renewal. An enormous diversity of ideas arises from the combination of enterprising spirit and technological opportunity.

"The international book and publishing industry has become a lot more multi-faceted."

Professor Gottfried Honnefelder, president of the Association of German Publishers and Booksellers, said: “Those involved in the market are optimistic. We're not only talking about the e-book business, we're already taking action. The face of the Frankfurt Book Fair is one of self-assurance.

"The framework exists; now each publisher and each bookseller needs to find the right path for itself."