Hachette Livre and La Librairie Antoine have signed an agreement for the creation of a 50-50 joint venture to publish works in Arabic.
Based in Beirut, Hachette Antoine (SAL) focuses on general literature, the youth segment, schoolbooks and other educational works, practical books and self-study materials.
It will be headed by Emile Tyan, La Librairie Antoine’s current managing director for sales.
There are 333 million Arabic speakers in the Middle East and North Africa, 45% of them under age 14.
“This company, in partnership with a key Arabic book publisher with which we have had strong ties for more than 75 years, is an exciting new venture for Hachette Livre. It will allow us to very quickly build a presence in a growing market,” says Arnaud Nourry, chairman of Hachette Livre.
“We are pleased to build a long-term relationship with Hachette Livre and ally ourselves with such a world-spanning publishing company. This new undertaking will allow us to boost our development in the Arabic-speaking world,” adds Sami Naufal, chairman and CEO of La Librairie Antoine.
About La Librairie Antoine:
Part of the Antoine company, which belongs to the Naufal family, La Librairie Antoine specializes in book distribution and retail, with 10 bookstores in Lebanon and Jordan. Over 15 years, the company has developed publishing activities, in partnership with EDICEF (Hachette Livre), that include textbook collections for private French-language education, plus self-sustained publishing of Arabic primary-education works and other educational materials in French and Arabic. It has recently acquired an Antoine subsidiary, Éditions Naufal, whose holdings represent one of the most prestigious Arabic-language general-literature collections, as well as the holdings of Beit El Hikmat, an Arabic-language youth-segment publisher. La Librairie Antoine enjoys annual sales of $22 million.
About Hachette Livre:
Hachette Livre, a subsidiary of Lagardère SCA, is the second-largest general-interest publisher worldwide. With annual sales of €2.159 billion, Hachette Livre is the leading publisher in France and the UK, No. 2 in Spain and No. 5 in the USA. Some 100 company publishing houses produce more than 17,000 new works per year in a dozen languages, mainly in French, English and Spanish. Hachette Livre covers all general-interest publishing segments, including fiction, essays, pocketbooks, youth-oriented literature, illustrated works, travel guides, schoolbooks and other educational materials, and serial books. Hachette Livre is based in Paris, France.