Paperight and the African Books Collective: strengthening the reach of African literature

Paperight is proud to announce that is has partnered with the African Books Collective to extend and strengthen the reach of African literature, both in the home continent and abroad.

Owned and run by a collective of over 100 independent African publishers, the African Books Collective seeks to increase the visibility and strength of indigenous African literature and scholarship. Based in Oxford, ABC has already been highly successful in Europe and North America, bringing the works of internationally-celebrated authors and scholars like Meshack Asare (Ghana), Linus Asong (Cameroon) and Otok p’Bitek (Kenya), along with over 2000 other titles, largely in English, French and Swahili, to larger audiences.

A product of pan-African cooperation, the publishers that make up ABC are from 21 African countries and include university presses, NGOs and research institutes, as well as commercial ventures. Despite being “fiercely commercial” on behalf of its constituent members, as well as offering massive infrastructural and marketing support to its authors, ABC itself is a strictly non-profit body.

Now, ABC looks to further extend its influence with its agreement to offer Print on Demand titles through the new Paperight website.

Paperight enables businesses and organisations – including copy shops, schools, libraries, NGOs and others – to print books out for customers legally and easily. By turning any printer and Internet connection into a bookselling business, Paperight instantly creates bookstores everywhere – providing access to books where traditional book distribution cannot go.

Arthur Attwell, CEO of Paperight, said, “We’re thrilled to be working with ABC, since our aims align so well. ABC already do extraordinary work making African authors available to a broad audience through retailers and distributors worldwide. It’s a privilege for us to be able to increase access to these books even the remotest places.”

Justin Cox of African Books Collective said: “ABC is very happy to be making our content available through Paperight. Not only will we secure valuable income for African publishers which might have ordinarily been lost to unauthorised copying or sharing we will, more importantly, address the need for the wider dissemination of African published books while also receiving new revenue for purchased content available through Paperight’s network of on-the-spot copy shops.”

A selection of books from the African Books Collective will be made available on Paperight from 1 June.

African Books Collective website | Paperight website