Publishers and Suppliers Supporting Retailers

Several publishers and suppliers have been in touch recently with details of action they’re taking to offer retailers extra support through the current period of uncertainty with STL and/or during the run up to Christmas. This post provides a round up of the information I’ve gleaned or received so far; it is, of course, far from a comprehensive list: comments are open for anyone who’d like to add to it. My apologies for the length of time it has taken to prepare this post.

Starting with STL themselves, STL UK have, as has been their habit for several years now, reduced their carriage-free minimum order level from £75 trade value ex-VAT to £50 from 1st – 22nd December. Full details in their trade email 01/12/2009 and on the STL Blog, Reduced FREE Carriage Offer. Daily cut off points remain at 2.30pm for email, fax and telephone orders or 4.00pm via (don’t be misled by their “4pm Electronic Orders”: STL do not regard email as electronic).

STL USA have upped their game in an attempt to fill in the gaps resulting from their divorce-in-progress from STL UK and are now offering free carriage to the UK with direct delivery to bookshops rather than transhipment via Carlisle, subject to a minimum order of 15 items. Basic info on the STL UK blog, more details from STL USA. Feedback on the service has been mixed.

Other Suppliers (A – Z)

Caritas Music Publishing offer a wide range of CDs and DVDs with no minimum order requirement and no charge for carriage. Normally new customers would be required to open a Trade Account first before placing orders, but at present customers may place their orders direct with Katharine Douglas and open a Trade Account later, subject to agreement to the company’s trade terms. Many order forms can be downloaded from the website, others can be supplied electronically or by post. See the Trade Customers / Agents and Dealers page or the Caritas Blog for more details.

Gardners have been reviewing their religious stock range and establishing direct links with publishers previously supplied via STL. SPCK and Zondervan, for example, are both well represented, and some hard-to-find Thomas Nelson titles (such as Ian MacNair’s Teach Yourself New Testament Greek) can be supplied Print-on-Demand. Their recently updated Religious Books Catalogue (pdf, 1.5MB) lists over 8,000 titles.

Gates of Praise have reduced their carriage free minimum order value from £50 to £30 throughout December. Publishers distributed include Charisma House, Creation House and Destiny Image.

IVP continue to offer one of the best delivery services to the UK Christian book trade, with no  minimum order level or small-order surcharges and in-stock items on orders placed before 12 noon despatched same day for next day delivery. With HarperCollins now added to their portfolio alongside Bible Society, Crossway, IVP USA, the Good Book Company and Piquant — to name just some of the publishers they represent — IVP provide a vital link in the evangelical supply chain. Download their trade flyer or visit their trade section for more info.

Lindisfarne Scriptorium is offering weekly specials to both trade and retail. Recent offers include cards at half-price, down to 75p each, selected books at reduced prices and their key book and music by Iona’s Dave Bainbridge and David Fitzgerald available together for £19.99 instead of £29.98. Standard trade discounts are 30%-38%, 2% extra for pro-forma/card payments. For several trade outlets they offer 40% discount across the full range of products and if there is sufficient interest then a special card / print offer just for trade as well as generous discounts on the Life Journey range and Life in Christ range is available. To find out more, visit their Trade Enquiries page.

Norwich Books and Music: Like IVP, NBM offer an excellent service, with no  minimum order level or small-order surcharges and in-stock items on orders placed before 12 noon despatched same day — but not for next day delivery: delivery tends to take 3 to 4 working days. With HarperCollins now added to their portfolio alongside their own imprints (Canterbury Press and SCM), Church House Publishing, Darton, Longman & Todd and Epworth — amongst others — NBM provide an important link in the wider Christian supply chain.

Others out there include CLC Wholesale , Integrity-Provident Distribution and Ritchie Christian Media Supplies, of whom we’ll no doubt be hearing more in due course. All parties welcome to leave further details via the comments…

And finally, the Bible Society’s plans to gather the Christian book trade in January seem to be taking shape. The following information was sent out to the trade by email from Steve Briars earlier this month:

Stronger Together – Weaker Apart

… is a consultation and presentation day being organised by CRE/CBC in association with the Booksellers Association Christian Booksellers Group (BACBG), the Publishers Association Christian Suppliers Group and Christian Marketplace magazine.

  • Tuesday 12 January 2010
  • St Paul’s Church, Robert Adam Street, London, W1U 3HW
  • 10.30am for 11.00am – including buffet lunch – concluding by 2.00pm

Topics on the agenda include:

  • An Introduction to the new ChristianResourcesTogether Partnership
  • A Retailers and Suppliers Conference at the High Leigh Conference Centre
  • A Retailers Day at the Christian Resources Exhibition at Sandown Park

Personal  invitations should be sent out before Christmas: responses are requested no later than Thursday 7th Jan 2010. Contact Steve or Mandy Briars at CRE for more information.