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A look at the program of 2021 Frankfurt Book Fair

Before the fair, digital-only: Frankfurt Conference and Masterclasses

Part of the trade program will take place online prior to the book fair itself, in the week of 11-15 October 2021.

This will include the two-day Frankfurt Conference and the Masterclasses, intensive sessions for sharing best practices and detailed expertise.

Frankfurt Conference: Trade Publishing
Tuesday, 12 October, 2.30-5.00 pm, Zoom 

The focus will be on the implications of the Covid-19 pandemic for the book trade and publishers, and the strategies and innovations that have resulted. Other topics include current literary film adaptations and the rights business, as well as trending developments in the children’s book market.
With: Siv Bublitz, President and Publisher, S. Fischer Verlage; and Cyrus Kheradi, Senior Vice President International Sales and Marketing, Penguin Random House, Peter Warwick, President and CEO, Scholastic among others.

Tickets for Frankfurt Conference (11-12 October 2021) will go on sale in mid-September 2021 at

Monday to Friday, 11-15 October 2021, times TBC
From 11 to 15 October, daily Masterclasses are planned for presenting production innovations and compelling business cases. The hosts of the Masterclasses include Copyright Clearance Center, Speechki, Bookwire and Brasil CBL Camara Basiliero do Livro.

Participation in the Masterclasses (11-15 October) is free of charge; the application process will begin in mid-September at

The Hof
The new The Hof season begins on 30 September with 15 new networking sessions, which will take place until mid-December 2021. The sessions will allow the global publishing community to meet at the virtual bar accompanied by live music, listen together to interesting speakers and find new business partners during breakout events. The programme highlights include sessions with high-profile industry players and promising up-and-coming talents.

Participation is free. Registration for all The Hof sessions begins in mid-September at

International trade program during the week of the fair
The impact of COVID-19 on the global publishing industry
Wednesday, 20 October, 11 am – 12 pm, livestream on the Agora and on

Covid-19 has had a huge impact on the global economy. At this digital panel, co-organized by WIPO and Frankfurter Buchmesse, the chief economist of WIPO, Carsten Fink, will launch the WIPO Publishing Industry Report and, together with three industry experts, will take a closer look at the impact of Covid-19 on the publishing industries. With Carsten Fink, Chief Economist, WIPO; Bodour Al Qasimi, President, International Publishers Association (IPA); Andre Breedt, Managing Director, Nielsen Book; John Degan, Chair, International Authors Forum. The moderator for the event will be Benedicte Page, Deputy Editor, The Bookseller.

Global CEO Talk 2021
Wednesday, 20 October, 2-3 pm, livestream on the Agora and on
Fabrice Bakhouche, Deputy CEO at Hachette Livre, will be the guest at the traditional Global CEO Talk, presented by Bookdao (China), buchreport (Germany), Livres Hebdo (France) and Publishers Weekly (USA). Moderated by Rüdiger Wischenbart, the event is being organized in partnership with Frankfurter Buchmesse and the ReBoot Books series of professional debates. The discussion will focus on the current edition of the annual Global 50 Ranking of the International Publishing Industry, which has been researched by Rüdiger Wischenbart since 2007. During the 60-minute session, Fabrice Bakhouche will be interviewed by editors from the four international publications on key topics affecting the global publishing industry. He will discuss the strategies used by Hachette’s new leadership team to navigate the Covid-19 pandemic.

Accessibility Now: Will you be ready for the European Accessibility Act in 2025?
Wednesday, 20 October, 3-4 pm, livestream on the Agora and on

In less than four years, the European Accessibility Act will require any publisher doing business in Europe to make their e-books available in accessible formats. This practical session, co-organized by the Federation of European Publishers, Frankfurter Buchmesse, the International Publishers Association and the World Intellectual Property Organization, will focus on two simple questions: what do publishers need to do and how can they do it? The session will include the award ceremony for WIPO’s ABC International Excellence Award for Accessible Publishing – celebrating inspirational publishers and initiatives helping make books accessible for all. Moderator: James Taylor, Director of Communications and Freedom to Publish, International Publishers Association. Speakers: Laura Brady, House of Anansi; Rachel Comerford, Macmillan Learning; Cristina Mussinelli, LIA Foundation.

Frankfurter Buchmesse’s Guest of Honour 2022 Spain: Have a Look at Spain
Wednesday, 20 October, 5-6 pm, livestream on the Agora and on

The Future of Independent Publishing
Thursday, 21 October, 2.00-3.45 pm, livestream on the Agora and on

Approximately one dozen speakers from different countries will come together at this event to discuss current issues affecting independent publishers. During a series of short talks, the participants will address the local challenges their companies face. Curated by Porter Anderson, editor-in-chief of Publishing Perspectives, together with independent publishers, the program points include topics such as “A World Beyond Zoom: The Future of International Rights Meetings and Rights Trading”, “Who Are We and Who Do We Want to Be? The Future of Diversity in Publishing” and “Between Gold Rush and Apocalypse: The Future of Book Markets After (or with) Covid”.

Frankfurter Buchmesse’s Guest of Honour 2022: Spain: A session on ebooks and audiobooks in Spain
Thursday, 21 October, 4-5 pm, livestream on the Agora and on

About Frankfurter Buchmesse Frankfurter Buchmesse is the international publishing industry’s biggest trade fair and the most important international marketplace for content – from novels and children’s books to academic databases and stories for films, games and virtual reality experiences. Publishing professionals from around the world meet here with partners from the technology sector and from related creative and cultural industries, sparking new partnerships and business models. Since 1976, the book fair has featured an annual Guest of Honour country, which showcases its book market, literature and culture to attendees in a variety of ways. Frankfurter Buchmesse organizes the participation of German publishers at international book fairs and hosts trade events throughout the year in major international markets. Frankfurter Buchmesse is a subsidiary of the Börsenverein des Deutschen Buchhandels (German Publishers & Booksellers Association).
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