Swift Press soars with 100,000 sold in first nine months

Swift Press soars with 100,000 sold in first nine months

Independent publisher Swift Press says it has sold 100,000 books within the first nine months.

The indie, which released Jessica Bruder’s Nomadland, was launched last June by Diana Broccardo and Mark Richards and published its first book in September 2020.

It has reported selling 80,000 physical books alongside 20,000 e-books and audiobooks for more than £500,000 from September 2020 to June 2021. Part of the Independent Alliance, the press focuses on literary fiction and crime and thrillers, in addition to trade non-fiction.

According to Nielsen Bookscan's TCM, Nomadland, Cynical Theories by Helen Pluckrose and James Lindsay and The High House by Jessie Greengrass are top sellers for the press in the UK, although Nielsen does not carry the publisher's total sales.

Richards, previously publisher at John Murray, and former Profile commercial director Broccardo, said in a joint statement: “When we imagined launching Swift, we never thought we’d be doing so in the middle of a pandemic. We are thrilled not only to have got up and running so quickly in spite of this, but to have achieved such a significant sales and revenue milestone in such a short space of time, and with such a varied publishing programme.

“Among the 12 books we published between September and June were agenda-setting non-fiction titles, including Robert Putnam’s The Upswing, described as a ‘landmark book’ by the New Statesman, and Helen Pluckrose and James Lindsay’s Cynical Theories, a book of the year in the Times, Sunday Times and Financial Times; the Times bestseller Nomadland by Jessica Bruder, the basis for the Oscar-winning film; the unmissable launch of Women’s Prize-shortlistee Jessie Greengrass’ extraordinary new novel The High House; and Jo Lloyd’s debut collection of stories, The Earth, Thy Great Exchequer, Ready Lies, recently longlisted for the Edge Hill Short Story Prize.

“We are looking forward to publishing an equally invigorating and varied list for the rest of this year—from The World Turned Upside Down by Yang Jisheng, the only history of the Cultural Revolution by an independent Chinese scholar, to cult author Rob Doyle’s brilliantly lucid Autobibliography and Timothy Ogene’s piety-pricking but heartfelt satire Seesaw, along with our first Radio 4 Book of the Week in Gayle Tzemach Lemmon’s The Daughters of Kobani.

“The first book we published at Swift was called You’re About to Make a Terrible Mistake! So far, touch wood, that doesn’t seem to have been the case.”