May 20, 2022

Association of American Publishers (AAP) Reports Publisher Revenue at $1.9 Billion for July 2019, up 5.9% as Compared to July 2018

From AAP:

The Association of American Publishers (AAP) today announced that participating publisher revenue was $1.9 billion for July of 2019, an increase of 5.9% over revenue for July 2018. The reported revenue, which is featured in AAP’s StatShot report, reflects all tracked categories, which include Trade (consumer publications), PreK-12 Instructional Materials, Higher Education Course Materials, Professional Publishing and University Presses.

For the month of July 2019:

  • In the area of Trade, net revenue for grew 6.7% as compared to July of last year, reaching $585 million for the month.
    • Children and Young Adult books were at nearly $160 million, an increase of 16.6% over the same month last year.
    • E-book revenues were nearly $84 million, an increase of 0.4% as compared to July 2018.
    • Downloaded audio came in at nearly $47 million for the month, an increase of 17.5% over the same month in 2018, while physical audio declined by 22.3%, to $3 million.
    • Adult books were $384 million, an increase of 3.9% over the July of 2018.
    • Religious press revenues were at nearly $41 million, a decline of 1.7% over the same month in 2018.
    • Paperback was the strongest performing paper format across trade categories with $206 million in revenue, an 8.1% increase as compared to July of 2018.
    • Children’s and YA accounted for 35.7% of paperback revenues in the trade category, with $73 million in revenue for the month.
    • Religious presses represented 4.5% of paperback revenues in the trade category, with $9 million in revenue.
    • Professional publishing, in the fields of business, law, medicine, science and technology, were at $66 million, a decline of 16.7% over the same month last year.

Trade Publishing

For July 2019, publisher net revenue for Trade, including sales to bookstores, wholesalers, direct to consumer, online retailers, etc., was up 6.7% as compared to the same period last year, reaching $584.6 million. Of trade categories (Adult Books, Children’s Books, and Religious Presses), Children’s Books had the highest revenue growth at 16.6%, representing 27.3% of all reported Trade revenue.

July 2019 Trade Book Net Revenue (in millions)

July 2019 July 2018 Percent Change
Adult Fiction/Non-Fiction $384.0 $369.6 3.9%
Children’s/YA $159.7 $136.9 3.9%
Religious Presses $40.9 $41.6 -1.7%
Total Trade $584.6 $548.2 6.7%

In terms of format, downloaded audio books continued to see the highest growth, with a 17.5% increase in total revenue for July 2019, totaling $46.5 million net revenue. For the second month this year, revenue for eBooks increased, going up 0.4% in July following a 4.2% increase in May 2019. Digital formats (downloaded audio and eBooks) represented 22.2% of reported trade revenue.

July 2019 Trade Net Revenue in Format (in millions)

July 2019 July 2018 Percent Change
Hardback $165.9 $158.4 4.7%
Paperback & Mass Market $230.9 $221.3 4.3%
eBooks $83.5 $83.1 0.4%
Downloaded Audio $46.5 $39.6 17.5%
Physical Audio $2.6 $3.3 -22.3%
Board Books $12.7 $11.1 13.9%
Other $42.6 $31.4 35.8%
Total $584.6 $548.2 6.7%


During July 2019 total revenues for participating education and scholarly publishers, which include Professional books, K-12 Instructional Materials, Higher Education, and University Presses, saw an uptick, reaching $1.4 billion and increasing 5.6% compared with the same period last year. The largest growth was attributable to the K-12 sector.

Following the decline in student spending for college course materials, revenues for Higher Education Course Materials were down 12.1% compared to the same period last year.

July 2019 Education and Scholarly Publishing Net Revenue (in millions)

July 2019 July 2018 Percent Change
Higher Ed Course Materials $554.3 $630.9 -12.1%
PreK-12 Instructional Materials $731.3 $569.1 28.5%
Professional Books $66.2 $79.5 -16.7%
University Presses $4.6 $4.4 5.2%
Total $1,356.4 $1,283.9 5.6%

Publisher net revenue, including sales to bookstores, wholesalers, direct to consumer, online retailers, etc., is tracked monthly by the Association of American Publishers (AAP) and includes revenue from about 1,360 publishers, with participation subject to change over time.


StatShot reports are designed to give an up-to-date snapshot of the publishing industry using the best data currently available. The reports reflect participants’ most recent reported revenue for current and previous periods, enabling readers to compare revenue on a year-to-year basis within a given StatShot report.

It is not, however, possible to make apples-to-apples comparisons to StatShot reports issued in previous years because: a) The number of StatShot participants fluctuates over time, with the pool of participants growing or shrinking in each report and b) It is a common accounting practices for businesses, including publishers, to restate revenue numbers based on updated information. If, for example, a business learns that its revenues were greater in a given year than its reports indicated, it will restate the revenues in subsequent reports, providing information that is more up-to-date and accurate.

About Gary Price

Gary Price ( is a librarian, writer, consultant, and frequent conference speaker based in the Washington D.C. metro area. Before launching INFOdocket, Price and Shirl Kennedy were the founders and senior editors at ResourceShelf and DocuTicker for 10 years. From 2006-2009 he was Director of Online Information Services at, and is currently a contributing editor at Search Engine Land.