Specsavers to sponsor National Book Awards

Specsavers has succeeded Galaxy as the headline sponsor of the National Book Awards, signing a two-year sponsorship deal, as the awards put out its call for submissions. Galaxy had sponsored the awards for the past five years, but turned down its first refusal option on continuing its support in May this year.

Specsavers already supports the Specsavers Crime Thriller Awards, and the high street optician's marketing director Richard Holmes said: "We’re delighted to support this unique celebration of popular literature and we hope that, through our network of stores, we can encourage even more people to pick up a book and enjoy a good read."

This year's National Book Awards will be held on 4th December 2012 at the Mandarin Oriental Hotel, with broadcast partners for the event to be announced shortly. Cactus TV m.d. Amanda Ross, who has staged and produced the event since 2004, said: "Cactus and Specsavers have had a brilliant partnership with The TV Book Club and The Specsavers Crime Thriller Season for four years. Since our first collaboration we’ve had a dialogue about the National Book Awards so I am delighted that they are now on board as our headline sponsor."

Alastair Giles, who brokered the deal on behalf of Cactus and Agile Marketing, said: "Securing Specsavers as a new headline sponsor for a further two years preserves the opportunity to celebrate and highlight books, that, though overlooked by some literary prize judges, are nontheless loved by millions of readers. We're thrilled that a brand as trusted and well-respected as Specsavers is joining that unique and popular celebration."

The awards issued a call for submissions to publishers, with the deadline 5th October 2012. The shortlisted titles will be announced on 12th November 2012.