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The services that the agency provides are:

Market Research & Feedback:
An open ended commitment to ensure that the publisher receives the best possible advice from the sales team and key buyers in the booktrade on such essential points as print runs, pricing levels, packaging, design and competitive products.

Sales Planning:
Full consultation and advice on the essential timing required to present books to our customers and for the production of selling material, press and trade releases and the mailing of information and materials.

Publicity Planning:
One of the first questions asked by a bookseller is “what publicity will there be?” The answer to this question needs to be identified at the earliest possible stage, so that the publisher’s publicity plans can be used by our agency as an important factor in subscribing the book to the retail trade.

Pre-Publication Bibliographic Registration:
We register your titles on all the various booktrade databases up to five months in advance of publication date. This includes BookData, Bowker and the various independent bookshop, online and library bibliographic systems. The full BookData bibliographic service (which involves a subscription fee) can still be taken up and maintained directly by the publisher as an option.

Selling To The Book Trade:
Our seven-strong field sales team provides direct representation for publishers to booksellers and wholesalers in the UK and Ireland. Our twelve-week selling cycle (four-weekly, to larger accounts) ensures that new titles and backlist promotions are shown to the trade throughout the year.

Sales Conferences:
Meet our experienced home and export sales team and present your books face to face at our twice-yearly sales conference meetings, which are held in London. Our sales conference venue since 1992 has been the Oval Cricket Ground.

Key Accounts:
Head office buyers, as well as the marketing personnel for the major UK bookshop chains (including W.H.Smith, Waterstone’s, Ottakars, Blackwells and Easons) are handled by the agency management and senior representatives to ensure close high level liaison.

Specialist Accounts:
Our team actively covers retailers and wholesalers who are not primarily booksellers, and booksellers who operate on specialist sites rather than the high street. These include outlets such as model shops, hobby outlets, museum and tourist sites, sports venues and theatre bookstalls, school and library suppliers. Premium sales opportunities, magazine offers, online, mail order sales and sponsorship opportunities are pursued by the agency management.

Export Sales:
For those publishers who require export sales, we have established a network of overseas representatives and agents who generate sales from English-langauge booksellers throughout Europe and the Commonwealth, including South Africa, Australia, New Zealand and the Far East.

Physical Distribution, Warehousing, Order Processing, Invoicing and Credit Control:
These all important accounting and logistical functions are handled by Orca Book Services from their
Poole-based offices and warehouse.

Sales Reporting:
Comprehensive computer-generated management reports are provided each month, showing title-by-title sales figures and accumulated backorders (we call them “dues”). Stock movement reports can also be provided weekly, if required.

A regular monthly statement shows the value of the payment being made a publisher, itemising the net invoice value of all sales achieved during that month, less the agency commission. These payments are made within 45 days of the relevant month-end, directly to the publisher’s bank account from the distributor’s trust account used to process publishers’ money. Monthly payments to publishers are made on the entire ledger amount due for the period (not, as with some distributor arrangements, just the sums that have been collected). If provision has to be made for occasional and irretrievable bad debts or bankruptcies, full data is made available.