Book sales rev up at Sharjah Children’s Reading Festival 2022
Publishers from around the globe collectively opine that the SCRF platform creates incredible business opportunities for them
Sharjah, May 20, 2022
On the heels of His Highness Sheikh Dr. Sultan bin Muhammad Al Qasimi, Supreme Council Member and Ruler of Sharjah, directing the allocation of AED 2.5 million for the purchase of books from the 139 publishers attending the Sharjah Children’s Reading Festival (SCRF) this year, an interview with some of them has revealed the incredible business opportunity the festival’s platform has created for them, directly linking publishers with thousands of readers of all age groups.
Hani Kreidieh and his wife, who run Dar Kriediah with presence in both Lebanon and the UAE, have an attractive collection at SCRF. “We publish original Arabic books as well as translations from Turkish, Finnish, Estonian, English and French. We also distribute international books. We have been welcoming a steady stream of buyers. In the morning, schoolchildren are visiting, and, in the evening, parents are bringing their children.”
DC Books, one of the most frequented bookstalls at every edition of SCRF and Sharjah International Book Fair (SIBF) is expecting a big turnout on the final weekend. According to Sanjay Jesudas, Purchase Manager of DC Books, more people will patronise the booth over the weekend when the crowds are expected to increase. Unlike its competitors, DC Books has had the advantage of selling books in Malayalam, Indian, English as well as international publications. With Keralites forming the largest chunk of the UAE population – a good many of them book lovers – the store has always had roaring sales in fiction, non-fiction, philosophy and children’s books genres.
Sunono Publishing Ltd UK is a fairly new entrant in the publishing scene but has been at Sharjah book fairs since its launch. Feda Shtia, Founder and CEO explained, “We are a publishing house based in Scotland, UK, and chose to name it Sunono after swallow, a migratory bird as it represents well our presence as an Arabic publisher in the UK. At SCRF 2022, our interactive books for 0-5 years are the bestsellers. We started only in November 2020, so the fact that we are surviving is a good sign, and a platform like SCRF goes a long way in ensuring this”.
The Palestinian, who was born in the UAE and lived here until 2018, vouched that SIBF had always been part of her life. “So, it means a lot to me to be exhibiting here at SCRF now,” she signed off to attend to a young family with a toddler.
Dar Asala Lebanon has always had a booth at SIBF and SCRF, trying to find new markets and new clients. “We publish children’s books, mainly picture books. They are original Arab publications, and we give all our buyers the SCRF special discount of 25%, which has boosted our sales,” noted Mazen Hamdan.