Monday, February 14, 2011

$20 million in book vouchers to be distributed as part of New Zealand Book Month

New Zealand Book Month has now secured all necessary sponsorship to print and distribute 4,000,000 $5 book vouchers during March 2011. Under the headline Books Change Lives, New Zealand Book Month will deliver the biggest ever national book promotion by putting $20,000,000 worth of “book money” into the hands of New Zealanders.

Distribution will begin on 23rd February with 750,000 vouchers distributed nationally to children in schools, courtesy of Chevron New Zealand, under the brand Caltex Energy for Learning, in association with The National Library.

Chevron NZ spokesperson Sharon Buckland says, “Chevron New Zealand is very supportive of schools and literacy programmes as part of our strong community focus. Last year alone, we donated $70,000 in individual school grants for reading recovery resources – ensuring that schools and communities had much-needed materials to help children learn to read. Now, in support of New Zealand Book Month, Caltex Energy for Learning is continuing this literacy focus by encouraging people to ensure there are books in as many New Zealand homes as possible.”

A further 2.2 million vouchers will be posted into residential letterboxes by Reach Media on 1st and 2nd March. This distribution is fully funded by TVNZ7, supported by Reach Media.

Under the banner of BNZ Literary Awards, BNZ will include 560,000 vouchers in its credit card statements during the weeks commencing 9th and 16th March. A further 360,000 vouchers will be included in the 13 March issue of the Sunday Star-Times.

Securing print and paper has been a significant element of sponsorship. This has been provided thanks to generous sponsorship from book printing specialist Printlink – part of Blue Star NZ. Nikki Crowther, Project Director, says, “The teams at Printlink and Blue Star NZ have been very supportive of what we are looking to achieve with New Zealand Book Month this year. As a well-established and highly pro-active book printer, Printlink is keen to work with us, with publishers and with booksellers to deliver powerful campaigns to encourage book sales in New Zealand.”

In June 2010, New Zealand Book Month announced its intention to create a wide celebration of books, reading and literacy that would reach out to new, lapsed and infrequent readers. Key to that goal has been the creation of a book promotion that would exist in “everyday places” outside of bookshops and libraries – to bring the importance of books, reading and literacy to the widest possible audience. A further 160,000 vouchers will be made available at BNZ and Caltex counters nationwide for customers to collect.

The Books Change Lives campaign has been developed in close consultation with the Book Trade Liaison Committee, which comprises representatives from the book industry organisations Publishers Association of New Zealand and Booksellers New Zealand. Tony Fisk, chairperson says,“BTLC is tremendously excited to be associated with this promotion which is a truly collaborative effort between publishers and booksellers. The potential social benefits associated with encouraging people to bring books into their homes are immense and we are thrilled that NZ Book Month has managed to engage with such illustrious partners to make the vision of a truly national campaign a reality”.

At time of last week, 133 publishers have committed to supporting the $5 voucher campaign together with 288 booksellers. Click here for full details of participating booksellers and here for participating publishers.

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