I spent last week in Frankfurt, where the publishing industry gathers each October for the annual Book Fair. It is always a huge amount of fun, but exhausting (one of my feet has still not recovered full sensation). The fair is vast (about 40 acres, if my calculations are right - 170,000m2), with nearly 300,000 attendees this year, and more than 7,500 exhibitors from over 100 countries.

This year's fair was particularly exciting for us as it is the first time our three divisions, Ingenta, VISTA and PCG were all together on one stand (pictures to come), and we were launching our new group brand, Ingenta. Plus we had some big news to share with the community: at the top level, all three divisions have been involved with, and will continue to contribute to, our recent deal with the BBC to power their BBC Monitoring web service, a subscription-based news service for which we will provide market research, information architecture, web design and maintenance, content conversion and hosting, subscriptions management and billing software, and sales representation to help them sell the service into new markets.

Each of our individual divisions also had major news to broadcast at the Fair; Ingenta announced its new deal with The Charleston Advisor, consumer report for the information community, which will now be hosted on the IngentaConnect platform.

Our VISTA division announced the ongoing success of the information commerce software it acquired from the merger with Ingenta; Dutch publisher Sdu is the latest client for the ICS system, which is already fully live and supporting three websites for launch customer Institute of Physics Publishing.

Meanwhile, Publishers Communication Group (PCG) released its latest research, into the evolution of renewals trends in scholarly journals over the last four years, which shows the increasing migration from print to electronic subscriptions and the growing influence of faculty recommendations on cancellations. We had copies of this study with us at Frankfurt and it has certainly aroused the interest of a large number of both librarians and publishers.

As if that wasn't enough, we also pre-released a white paper at the event, titled "Trends in Digital Commerce", that assesses current strategic trends and future expectations regarding publishers’ digital publishing activities. Keep an eye out for the official release of this white paper in the next month or so. (And for tomorrow's posting of the other news circulating at Frankfurt this year).