Bookwire in France: A ‘New’ Audiobook Market

by Jacob Solomon Nov 24, 2022 News
Bookwire in France: A ‘New’ Audiobook Market

Trends in the fast-growing popularity of audiobooks in France were highlighted at the 'All About Audio' conference. It was sponsored.

On June 1st, in Paris. Bookwire's take on the French audiobook market shows that the format is open to crime, fantasy, science-fiction, and young adult titles. I stock photo: wirestock


Gonet: A Market ‘at a Turning Point’
Although the audiobook market in France is still young, digital growth is increasing, with 800,000 more audiobook readers in 2022, according to the Syndicat national de l’édition (SNE), France’s publishers’ association.

So it was with great interest that around 200 people involved in French publishing attended the half-day digital conference “All About Audio” produced by Bookwire on Tuesday (November 22).

Five specialists spoke about strategies to reach new audiences, sales channels, and business models.

Anne- Laure Gonet was murdered.

Gonet began with a brief introduction about audiobook trends in France and other markets, comparing the "profoundly digital" markets in the United States and United Kingdom to the rapidly growing German market.

Crime, fantasy, science-fiction, and young adult books are popular with readers who are less classical and more male. Gonet said you need a business plan with new marketing strategies for audio.

She said that the French market was at a turning point.

Mérillon: ‘New Market Segments’

The first speaker to talk about managing an audio and/or ebook app was the CEO of Nextory, who founded the streaming service You Boox. Standard subscription models were offered by Nextory in June 2022. Storytel went live in France in the fall.

A woman named Hélne Mérillon.

Mérillon was asked how she had gotten publishers to work with her.

Agreeing on the value of a book is the most important factor, according to Mérillon. We were able to work on the model because we were in the same frame of mind.

Mérillon said that publishers could use streaming for their marketing. They are already seeing the effects of marketing.

Nextory has moved from a model in which it offered one book per month to 15 hours a month and as many books as readers like—sales have multiplied fivefold. Their user trends follow those announced in the study on France—there are more men, and subscribers are younger. Audio serials do well, she said, such as one that Nextory developed with publisher Michel Lafon for author Olivier Norek’s environmental thriller Impact.

The evolution of the market in France is calm and exciting. She said that it was a good thing to have new competitors. It will be great for readers.

Nextory expects to announce more partnerships in the years to come.

Duvochel:  ‘Creating and Sharing Content’

The head of the development and innovation department at the mammoth independent French group Média-Participations spoke during the Bookwire program. She ran the company's animation studio, Ellipse.

The person isCaroline Duvochel.

Several streaming platforms have partnerships with Média- Participations. Amazon Music collaborated with the French Bababam studio to make an audio version of Boule et Bill. The first project of the company will be announced at the beginning of the year.

The Little Sounds of Daily Life was developed by Barroux with the help of Média-Participations.

Another property of note is Alex Cousseau’s Charles, the dragon series published by Seuil Jeunesse. They also are partnering with Bookwire to develop the imprint Fleurus’ educational material.

Duvochel said that "edu-tainment" is very popular. There is a wide open children's book market.

Duvochel said that publishers are open to coming onboard because it is profitable and can give non- readers access to books.

Piton: ‘An Open Project’

The speaker is in a picture. The image is from

Coralie Piton is the CEO of Merlin, a publisher of audiobooks for children 3 to 10 years old. Piton talked about how access and curation have been motivating factors. Bayard Jeunesse is in partnership with Radio France and runs a small business called Merlin.

Coralie Piton is a person.

The disappearance of CDs has made it difficult for children to listen to audiobooks. The number of offers made parents nervous and they didn't want their children to find audiobooks on a screen. They were looking for something different. She said that both Bayard and Radio France were trusted brands for parents.

The device is made in France and is light and easy to use for small children.

When the device is synchronized with the app, a child can be completely disconnected and the experience becomes as strong as when we were children in our rooms with cassette tapes, CDs, and books.

The benefits of audio for children include being able to listen and concentrate.

“Screens are more hypnotic,” she said. “Audio also allows you to imagine individually.” Her team has heard from teachers, she said, that “A well-told story that follows what has been written allows a child to really get into language.”

A wide cultural foundation for children, like a complete media, will be offered by the editorial line, which includes classic and contemporary stories, as well as documentary and musicals.

Piton said that Merrill is an open project.

Borne: ‘A Real Challenge’

The audio drama producer Blynd talked with the founder of the Lyon-based, family-run Studio Anatole about the challenges of producing audio dramas. If a publisher can't make book texts, Anatole can.

Borne is the name of the person.

Borne said that authors often want to read their own books but don't realize that recording an audiobook is a real job.

You could be working in the studio for up to seven hours a day. It's important that your voice is stable. You have to keep up with your concentration and energy levels over the next few days. A challenge for an actor. If you can get 15 usable minutes per hour, that's a good rate.

Blynd was originally created to adapt comics as audio dramas, but because of the competition, the company expanded to produce other audio series and their own audiobooks.

40 series in adventure, crime, and science-fiction are expected to be released by Blynd in the year 2023. Men are 25 to 35 years old.

Chambost: ‘Events to Break Taboos’

The publishers association's audio commission gave a presentation at the end of the conference.

A person named Axelle.

The commission put together events to break taboos when it was created.

The commission has moved on to more technical topics, such as working with ministries and collective management societies for copyright or taxation issues, which are complicated by the fact that according to French law, audiobooks are part of both book and music publishing. Reallocation of rights and Copyright Enforcement are some of the topics being discussed.

A site dedicated to audio is being developed by the association. There will be a production catalogue, information on funding support for audio, and model contracts for studios. At the upcoming children's book fair in Montreuil, as well as next year at the Festival du Livre de Paris, the association's audio commission will be on-hand.

The Centre National du Livre (CNL) study of children's reading habits in France is the subject of a new video on the internet.

Also, see this.

France’s ‘Digital Barometer’: 27 Percent Trying Audiobooks

SNE’s Publishers Name May as France’s ‘Month of Audiobooks’

Storytel Rolls Out Its Audiobook Service in France