BBC Books, part of Ebury Publishing, has launched an expanded partnership with BBC Radio, giving it exclusive first option on books accompanying series and Sounds podcasts.
The deal was negotiated by publishing director Albert DePetrillo and Ben Batson, senior manager for commercial business development at BBC Radio & Music.
Although the publisher has released books with BBC Radio for many years, including this autumn's The Shipping Forecast Puzzle Book, the new deal will see the list greatly expand with new talent, series brands and ideas. The first acquisitions under the partnership will be announced in the coming weeks.
BBC Books is a longstanding joint venture between Ebury Publishing and BBC Studios that already gives Ebury first option to publish against BBC-produced TV content. The new world rights deal covers all BBC-produced audio content, and includes rights to publish e-books and original audiobooks of all titles.
Ebury will provide the BBC with a dedicated publishing team to work alongside the broadcaster's radio and podcast commissioners. The team will be led by Albert DePetrillo along with senior commissioning editor Yvonne Jacob, head of campaigns Steph Naulls and head of publicity and communications Claire Scott.
DePetrillo said: “Radio and podcasts are absolutely booming right now, and this partnership is a remarkable opportunity for BBC Books and Ebury, extending our natural alliance with the BBC. We’re looking forward to working closely with the BBC to publish many outstanding books and authors, across a huge range of subjects, from politics and natural history to sport and comedy."
Batson added: “BBC Radio remains the high-water mark for quality radio programming the world over, and now combined with the amazing content from BBC Sounds there’s never been a better time for audio storytelling to connect with audiences beyond the airwaves and headphones. This new partnership builds on the great success we’ve achieved with BBC Books and Ebury over the years and solidifies a fantastic working relationship. We look forward to publishing some cracking new titles!”