Godfray heads up Bookseller 100

Godfray heads up Bookseller 100

Booksellers Association chief executive Tim Godfray heads up our latest Bookseller 100, the sixth annual compilation of the people who have had the biggest impact across the book trade in the past year. Godfray has been named 2014's "101st", a position which honours a member of the industry who has had an impact far beyond his or her organisation alone.

The trade veteran is praised for: "upping the ante in recent years, in terms of forcefully representing members’ views on a wide range of topics—from business rates to an unregulated Amazon—in Westminster, Brussels and in the wider media…" The Bookseller judged that "Godfray and the BA have put their heads above the parapet in the past couple of years because the climate requires it. An indicative Godfray/BA 2.0 moment came at last year’s London Book Fair, with the normally suited-and-booted chief exec prowling a stage, sporting a Books Are My Bag (BAMB) T-shirt and a pair of trainers, speaking eloquently yet forcefully about why an unchecked Amazon is bad for the entire trade."

Across the rest of the list, now in its sixth year, just over a third (34) are new entries, including Curtis Brown agent Gordon Wise and Reading Agency c.e.o. Sue Wilkinson. The number of “evergreens”, those who have been on all six Bookseller 100s, is now just 23, including Penguin Random House UK c.e.o. Tom Weldon and Hachette UK group c.e.o. Tim Hely Hutchinson.

There is a demonstrable shift this year, with more of an emphasis on the academic and educational side and children’s publishing which, with 13 and 11 entries respectively, represent the highest number of individuals ever on the 100 from both sectors.

Bookseller features and insight editor Tom Tivnan said: "This is reflective of the climate: academic and education publishers are digitally savvy and, in many cases, outpacing their trade counterparts in experimenting with new business models (and they tend to be far more profitable, or at the very least, more dependably profitable). Children’s, meanwhile, is grabbing an increasing share of trade publishing—particularly on the print side—and is responsible for a huge chunk of 2014’s hits and main talking points: Jeff Kinney, John Green, David Walliams, Julia Donaldson, Minecraft and loom bands among them."

The list also sees a gender divide, with only 34 women, down from 38 last year, partially as a result of some high-profile retirements.

Tim Godfray is the third person to have been selected as the 101st, after former Pearson c.e.o. Marjorie Scardino in 2012 and Penguin Random House UK chair Gail Rebuck last year.

Subscribers can see the full list here.