Hamad Bin Khalifa University Press (HBKU Press) is all set to virtually participate in the 2020 edition of Frankfurter Buchmesse (the Frankfurt International Book Fair) to be held on October 14 – 18, marking its fourth consecutive year showcasing at the world’s largest book fair.

Frankfurter Buchmesse announced earlier this year that the 2020 edition would be a blended edition, using the traditional exhibition site as well as a committed online platform for publishers aboard.

“With every new challenge that the global pandemic has presented, HBKU Press continues to find innovative solutions to participate in the local and global publishing industries,” explains Bachar Chebaro, Executive Director of Hamad Bin Khalifa University Press. “This year’s book fair season, which kicks off with Frankfurter Buchmesse, marks a new era of information exchange. It presents different opportunities and roadblocks that we must consider in order to continue to successfully adapt to the changing times.”

In previous years, the international exhibition would host hundreds of publishing companies, publishing-related companies, as well as media outlets from around the world in a spectacular four-day event that allowed publishers and media to interact and engage.

But with restrictions on travel and concerns for safety above all amidst the Covid-19 pandemic, the organisers revamped the event this year to include an interactive virtual experience for exhibitors and fair-goers. The online option provides the flexibility to participate without compromising the quality of the experience or safety measures and travel precautions in place.

Frankfurter Buchmesse 2020 has supplemented its fairground offerings with digital events, which will act as a multimedia stage for exhibitors, authors and creative artists. The online platform aims to bring the international publishing industry and the creative industries together in a virtual space from anywhere in the world.

“I have every confidence that HBKU Press will rise to the challenge,” continues Chebaro.

“It is exciting to see that each year there is a marked rise in interest in HBKU Press. Even with the new interface for this year’s  fair , we hope to continue to form new relationships and solidify existing ones with publishers around the globe.”

HBKU Press’ virtual ‘booth’ represents over eleven years of the publishing house’s catalog of acclaimed works and innovative publications, from award-winning original titles in both English and Arabic, to translated works by globally recognized authors and translators. HBKU Press plans to promote the brand internationally, enter into agreements to buy and sell the rights of books that meet their strategic vision, while establishing relationships with entities that can expand the reach of their titles.