Profile Books has partnered with Little, Brown to create its own dedicated audiobook publishing programme. Under the new arrangement Little, Brown will record, produce and distribute audiobook editions of Profile titles, which will be published under the new Profile Audio imprint.
Sarah Shrubb, audio publisher at Little, Brown, will be working with Profile editor Louisa Dunnigan and publicity director Hannah Ross, on the new audio books list for Profile, which is to start off by publishing in the region of 10 – 15 audiobooks a year.
Several Profile titles have already been released as audiobooks by Little, Brown, including Ryan Holiday’s Conspiracy, Mary Beard’s How Do We Look/ The Eye of Faith (based on her episodes for the BBC TV series "Civilisations"), Mihir Desai’s The Wisdom of Finance and Shapeshifters by Gavin Francis.
The new Profile Audio imprint intends to release How Democracy Ends by David Runciman on 11th July and 2011 Booker Prize-shortlisted author Esi Edugyan’s new novel Washington Black at the end of August. It is intended that all audiobooks will be timed to coincide with the print publication date.
The new venture follows hot on the heels of Love Audio Week earlier this month and fresh statistics from the Publishers Association (PA) which reported that audio now accounts for 5% of consumer book spending in the UK, while audiobook downloads rose 22% in 2017. Early figures from the PA's Yearbook suggested publisher sales of audiobooks increased to £31m sales last year. Stephen Lotinga then said "publishers are investing and innovating in audio so that audiences can experience books in new ways and that is why it continues to be the fastest growing digital format."
Commenting, Andrew Franklin, m.d. of Profile Books, said publishers owed it to their authors to reach "the widest possible audience" for their books and classed Little, Brown "an easy choice" of partner for its foray into audio.
"No publisher is looking after their authors properly if they aren’t committing to reach the widest possible audience for their books," said Franklin. "We have been doing this with our print books and e-books, and now want to ensure we are reaching an ever growing audiobook audience. We want to be up there with the very best in the audiobook market, so for us it was an easy choice to partner with Little, Brown, who are absolutely ahead of the game."
Little, Brown's audio publisher Shrubb said: "We are thrilled that Profile has chosen Little, Brown for this wonderful new audiobook imprint, and I’m very excited at the opportunity to work with Profile’s fantastic list of authors. We have some great plans and we’re looking forward to producing some brilliant recordings."