The awards were judged by Karen Ferns, Jill Rawnsley, Carolyn Morgan, Graham Beattie and Karren Beanland.
Nelson outfit Potton & Burton, formerly known as Craig Potton Publishing, was named Publisher of the Year. Potton & Burton is responsible for Nicky Hager’s phenomenally popular political expose, Dirty Politics. The non-fiction book has had around 10 reprints and sold more than 17,000 copies.
Speaking of Potton & Burton’s award, Rawnsley says: “Potton & Burton shows exceptional commitment to quality in its publishing programme, its production values, its relationships with customers and authors alike, and in the delivery of an essential distribution service. As well as this, the company’s dedication to New Zealand stories shines through in their regularly award-winning books.”
Publisher and co-owner Robbie Burton explained on his blog in March that the name change was about reflecting the variety of non-fiction books that Potton & Burton now publishes.
“We’ve changed our name because the consistent feedback has been that our old name was pigeon-holing us as publishers of a narrow range of books, principally the photographic and environmental books that, quite rightly, people associate with Craig Potton’s name,” Burton says.
He says the shrinking of New Zealand’s publishing industry means that independent publishers like Potton & Burton will become more important as larger outfits reduce their presence in New Zealand.
Beloved Wellington store Unity Books was awarded Bookseller of the Year. Judge Carolyn Morgan said Unity Books runs 50 events each year, and books published in New Zealand account for 18 percent of its sales.
“Unity has proven over the years a great training place for aspiring booksellers,” she says. “Overall, they win this award for their general excellence, and the special place they occupy in the community.”
Also recognised at the Book Trade Industry Awards are:
NZ Book Industry Special Award: Bridget Williams Books.
Marketing Strategy of the Year: Penguin Random House NZ, for Chelsea Winter’s Everyday Delicious
2015 Sales Rep of the Year: Tammy Ruffell, HarperCollins NZ Lower North Island rep
2015 Young Book Retailer of the Year: Jenna Todd, Time Out Books, Mt Eden