Penguin Random House UK is to become the global publisher and distributor for all BBC-branded physical and digital audiobooks.
The deal signed today with BBC Worldwide extends an agreement signed by Random House Audio and BBC Worldwide in 2013 to sell and distribute BBC audiobooks that had previously been available through the now-defunct AudioGO.
Penguin Random House UK will now take responsibility for the publishing programme for BBC Audio titles first broadcast on BBC radio.
This will include commissioning, production, publicity and marketing, in addition to the sales, stock management and distribution of the BBC’s spoken word content in all markets, including, for the first time, North America, Australia and New Zealand, which were excluded from the previous agreement between Random House Audio and BBC Worldwide.
There will be no change to the current release schedule of 100 new BBC audiobooks to be published this financial year. BBC Audio’s catalogue of 3,500 titles includes radio content such as Just a Minute and Cabin Pressure A-Z, drama programmes like Good Omens, and factual show such as Germany: Memories of a Nation.
Hannah Telfer, group director, consumer and digital development at Penguin Random House UK, said: “We’re delighted to extend our relationship with BBC Worldwide and work with them to grow their much-loved flagship brands even further and build new audio talent. Penguin Random House UK is passionate about growing the audiobook market and committed to publishing many more bestsellers like The Girl on the Train; our fastest selling audiobook to date.”
Nicholas Brett, director of books and audio at BBC Worldwide UK, said: “Both Penguin Random House UK and BBC Worldwide are committed to bringing the wealth of brilliant BBC radio content to as many people as possible which is great news for writers, performers and retailers. This licensing agreement means audiences can enjoy a vast range of titles from a combined backlist and frontlist, including the best of BBC radio comedy, drama and factual programming.”