ALA Is Not Selling Trade Show to Reed
Despite articles in Publishers Weekly and Library Journal suggesting otherwise, the American Library Association has no plans to sell its Annual Conference and Midwinter Meeting trade shows to Reed Exhibitions and merge the Annual Conference with BookExpo America.
ALA Executive Director Keith Michael Fiels said today that he had received an inquiry from Jim Milliot at PW on Friday saying that there were “many rumors” circulating about Reed Exhibitions taking over the shows and “a number of sources have told us over the last few days that a deal is close.”
Fiels responded, “ALA is most definitely not selling its trade show to Reed.” He went on to affirm, however, that “BEA and ALA have been talking about ways in which we might work more closely together in the future. Discussions are ongoing; we’ll let everyone know if and when we have anything to report,” he added.
Reed sold Library Journal, School Library Journal, and Publishers Weekly earlier this year, and some have speculated that the company may be looking for some sort of cost-/profit-sharing arrangement with ALA to help BookExpo—which has already been pared down to a two-day meeting— deal with multiple threats to the publishing industry, including piracy, the decline of brick-and-mortar stores, and the perhaps-too-low price of e-books, as the New York Times noted in its coverage of BookExpo America 2010.