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“Community” and “Connectivity” are Themes of Show

Norwalk, CT, January 8, 2009: BookExpo America (BEA) and the American Booksellers Association (ABA) have announced a joint program intended to help ease the economic challenges facing booksellers who wish to attend the 2009 trade show; to invigorate the convention; and to give booksellers and other industry professionals who attend BEA more networking opportunities. Notably, BEA will offer limited free convention attendance to ABA bookstore members. Additionally, ABA will bring its annual Day of Education, which is closely associated with its highly regarded Winter Institute, back to the convention facility in 2009, and BEA will offer a concurrent retailer education track to encourage “cross over” attendance. For the past two years, ABA has been conducting its panels and forums off site. BEA will take place at the Jacob K. Javits Center in New York City, May 28 – May 31, 2009. 

“BEA and ABA are well aware of the financial realities of many of the bookseller attendees this year, and in light of the recent disappointing retail season, we are committed to making attendance at BEA simpler and easier for booksellers,” notes Lance Fensterman, Vice President and Show Manager for BookExpo America.” We are all about community and connectivity at BEA this year. The booksellers are what drive our show, and we’re excited to offer free attendance to so many of them -- allowing for that communication and connectivity throughout the Day of Education and the convention. Chance encounters, meaningful dialogue and the opportunity to attend each others’ programs and educational sessions is a fundamental part of what it means to do business at BEA and so I can’t begin to express how happy I am that we are able to make this announcement. We welcome ABA members with open arms at every opportunity.”

ABA Chief Operating Officer Oren Teicher said, "ABA is very pleased to have taken these steps in conjunction with our colleagues at Reed to help as many booksellers as possible attend BookExpo America. We have long believed that BEA offers booksellers extraordinary value, as it combines an industry-wide introduction to upcoming titles, outstanding educational programming, and an unparalleled opportunity to meet with and learn from fellow booksellers and others in the industry.

Officials note that ABA’s Day of Education will take place on Thursday, May 28, the day before the exhibit floor opens. By bringing all ABA constituents back to the convention facility for the Day of Education, there will be the opportunity to hold the popular Editor & Bookseller Buzz Forum in its traditional time slot on Thursday afternoon at 4:15 p.m., as well as BEA’s Opening Night Keynote on Thursday at 5:30 p.m. BEA and ABA will work closely in scheduling Thursday’s sessions to maximize optimal attendance and to avoid obvious conflicts. As part of the new plan, ABA's annual Celebration of Bookselling, previously a ballroom event, will be marked by a series of nightly events at Hotel ABA, the Brooklyn Marriott. All other ABA functions, however, including the Indie Next List Lunch (successor to the popular Book Sense Lunch), on Friday, May 29, will be held at the Javits Center, as will the newly revamped Indies Choice Book Awards (at a time to be determined.) ABA will once again create an ABA Lounge at the convention center for the exclusive use of its members.

BEA and ABA officials note that special social events will be taking place at Hotel ABA, which has become a popular gathering place during the convention weekend for booksellers, publishers, and other industry professionals. These mixing events will be jointly sponsored by both BEA and ABA. Hotel ABA will return to its location at the New York Marriott at the Brooklyn Bridge, 333 Adams Street, Brooklyn, NY. BEA and ABA are working together to cover the cost of providing ABA members with NYC MetroCards in order to travel between Brooklyn and the Javits Center for the four days of the convention. Reservations for Hotel ABA are now being accepted on the ABA website,

Details of the free BEA admission for ABA bookstore members, to be outlined in the coming weeks, include one additional free BEA pass to every store registered for ABA’s Winter Institute. BEA will continue as a sponsor of ABA’s Winter Institute.

“All our decisions about our show are based on how they affect socializing,” concludes Fensterman. “From this standpoint, this is the biggest announcement we will be making this year since it is an agreement that fundamentally recognizes the social nature of our relationship with ABA. After all is said and done, our relationship with ABA, as well as all the relationships that each of us have with our industry peers, are enhanced by how well we mix and mingle. Our goal at BEA is to create a community where this is possible and to focus on our connectivity and inter-dependence; on what we have in common, as opposed to what sets us apart.” 

ABOUT REED EXHIBITIONS: Reed Exhibitions is the world’s leading events organizer. In 2007 Reed brought together over six million industry professionals from around the world generating billions of dollars in business. Today Reed events are held in 38 countries throughout the Americas, Europe, the Middle East and Asia Pacific, and organized by 39 fully staffed offices.

Reed organizes a wide range of events, including exhibitions, conferences, congresses and meetings. Its portfolio of over 500 events serves 47 industry sectors, including: Aerospace & aviation, automobiles, building & construction, electronics, energy, engineering, entertainment, environment, food & hospitality, gifts, healthcare, IT, jewellery, life sciences & pharmaceuticals, property, manufacturing, medical education, packaging & converting, printing & visual communication, security, sports & recreation, travel.

Working closely with professional bodies, trade associations and government departments Reed ensures that each and every event is targeted and relevant to industry needs. As a result, many Reed events are market leaders in their field. Reed Exhibitions is part of Reed Elsevier Group plc, a FTSE-100 company and world-leading publisher and information provider. In 2006, Reed Elsevier made adjusted profit before taxation of £1,052 million on turnover of £5,398 million.


Founded in 1900, the American Booksellers Association is a not-for-profit trade organization devoted to meeting the needs of its core members -- independently owned bookstores with storefront locations -- through education, information dissemination, business products and services, and advocacy. ABA exists to protect and promote the interests of independent retail book businesses, as well as to protect the First Amendment rights of every American. The association actively supports free speech, literacy, and programs that support local and independent retail shops. A board of nine booksellers, representing thousands of members, governs the Association. ABA is headquartered in Tarrytown, New York.

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About ABA

The American Booksellers Association, a national not-for-profit trade organization, works with booksellers and industry partners to ensure the success and profitability of independently owned book retailers, and to assist in expanding the community of the book.

Independent bookstores act as community anchors; they serve a unique role in promoting the open exchange of ideas, enriching the cultural life of communities, and creating economically vibrant neighborhoods.




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