Postal service company An Post has signed a three year headline sponsorship deal with the Irish Book Awards.
The company will be taking over the headline sponsorship post from Bord Gáis Energy which announced last year it was stepping down as title sponsor of the Irish Book Awards after an “extremely fruitful eight-year partnership”.
David McRedmond, c.e.o. of An Post, said that the written word was "at the heart" of the company, and as such it is "honoured" to be able to sponsor the Irish Book Awards.
"Books connect people as An Post connects people, and we share is a love for connection and community. ‘Readers Wanted’ is the cry of the Awards this year and we will support this across our business with enthusiasm and creativity," he said.
Maria Dickenson, chairperson of the Irish Book Awards and m.d of Dubray Books, added that the new partnership was a "wonderful fit".
"We are delighted to team up with a nationally recognised brand that will help us to spread the word about reading and put more books in the hands of readers", she said. "It is also a fantastic opportunity to help us highlight even more the wealth of wonderful writing talent in Ireland."
She continued: "The Irish Book Awards have become a landmark event in the Irish bookselling calendar, supported by the entire industry and, with An Post on board as the headline sponsor, we will bring the event to an exciting new level, celebrating the vibrancy of the Irish book business.”
The winners of the Irish Book Awards are announced at an annual awards ceremony in Dublin every November. The event is also broadcast to the nation on RTÉ television.
Now in its 13th year, the Irish Book Awards consist of a range of categories including Novel of the Year, Children’s, Cookery, Crime Fiction, Popular Fiction, Nonfiction, Sports, Short Story, Poetry and Teen and Young Adult. This year, a new Irish Language category is being added to the roster of awards – The Love Leabhar Gaeilge Irish Language Book of the Year.
In addition to category winners, two special awards are also announced at the event: The Bob Hughes Lifetime Achievement Award recognises the contribution of distinguished Irish writers and poets, and winners have included Seamus Heaney, Edna O Brien, Eavan Boland and Maeve Binchy, and The International Recognition Award, a special award made to international authors who have contributed substantially to the health and wealth of the Irish book-trade. Previous winners include David Walliams, Jilly Cooper, Bill Bryson and Jeffrey Archer.
Submissions for The An Post Irish Book Awards 2018 are now being accepted via www.irishbookawards.ie and every publisher in Ireland is invited to nominate books for the publicly voted categories. The closing date for applications is Friday 7th September.