The 94th ABA Conference and Trade Exhibition: Building toward a sustainable future

We are thrilled to announce the highlights of the ABA Conference and Trade Exhibition to take place at the QT Hotel in Canberra on 17 and 18 June, 2018

The focus for this year's conference will be on having a healthy and sustainable bookselling community at a time of significant disruption and change. We will not ignore the elephant in the room. But while Amazon now has a beachhead in Australia, the reality is that the book buying public have had ready access to them for many years. We will listen to two experts talking about their strategies in dealing with the digital on-line economy.

Keynote speakers

Paul Currie is the Chief Executive of one of the English-speaking world's great bookshops, Foyles. Paul took over a business that was much loved, but suffering significant losses. Through a complete overhaul of their approach to customer service, he has turned Foyles back into a profitable business. 

John Batistich, 'Amazon and Ali Baba: Competing with Retail's most disruptive force's has 25 years' experience across research, marketing, digital and general management with blue chip companies like Westfield, Kimberly Clark and Lion Nathan. He has been rated by CMO Magazine as one of the top two CMOs in Australia. John is also one of the world's leading experts on how companies like Amazon operate, and strategies to compete with them.

Morris Gleitzman, the current Australian Children's Laureate, Morris Gleitzman, is the author of award-winning books for children and young adults. In his keynote address, Morris will be discussing the role that adults – and in particular, booksellers – can play in encouraging and developing the next generation of readers.

Clementine Ford talks about the important role that bookshops play in bringing discourse, and strategies for dealing with those who shut down the debate. In October, Allen & Unwin will publish Boys Will Be Boys, following her great success with Fight Like A Girl.

Dr Michael Mosley trained to be a doctor at the Royal Free Hospital in London. After qualifying, he joined the BBC where he has been a science journalist, executive producer and, more recently, a well-known television presenter. He has won numerous television awards and was named Medical Journalist of the Year by the British Medical Association.

Other sessions include:
Children's Bookselling - focusing on picture books with Leesa Lambert (The Little Bookroom) and featuring Anna Walker and Jane Godwin.

Branding your Business – led by Hachette Co-Managing Director Justin Ractliffe, this session focuses on how bookshops can develop a unique identity. Justin presentation will be followed by a panel of booksellers sharing their experiences of (re)branding their bookshops.

How to make Award-winning books work for you: Miles Franklin Literary Award shortlisted authors return for a lively discussion about how booksellers can work with authors to sell more of Australia's great literary works.

Sexual Harassment in the work place has become a touchstone issue globally over the last 12 months. We have invited an expert on addressing these issues to discuss what is inappropriate behaviour, and what recourse is available to individuals who have been victimised by colleagues, employers or customers.

Gala Dinner – Celebrating Bookselling

Our Gala Dinner - Celebrating Bookselling – features highly respected ABC journalist and host of 7:30, Leigh Sales, whose new book, Any Ordinary Day, will be published by Penguin Random House in October. Our MC for the night, Annabel Crabb, is the ABC's chief political writer and author of Special Guest, (Allen & Unwin, October). The pre-dinner drinks speaker is actor, writer and comedian Celeste Barber who has a new book coming out in September with HarperCollins Australia.

We're again proud to be hosting the announcement of the Miles Franklin Literary Awards shortlist for 2018. The dinner will also feature the announcement of the recipients of awards and fellowships.

© 2014 Australian Booksellers Association Inc.
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