GRAND RAPIDS, Mich.,Jan. 7, 2011— Zondervan, the world’s leading Bible publisher, today reported its NIV Bible eBook featuring the updated New International Version of the Bible (NIV), is the company’s fastest-selling eBook, and broke into the USA Today bestsellers list spanning all books. Zondervan said the NIV ebook, which released Dec. 15, 2010 featuring the updated NIV text, sold twice as many copies compared with the same period last year.
The NIV Bible (www.TheNIVBible.com) made its debut as the #1 eBook in the Religion & Spirituality Category of Apple’s iBookstore and rose to #7 for all books on Apple. It is currently among the Top 100 in Amazon’s Kindle Store, and a Top 25 eBook in Barnes & Noble’s Nookbook Store. The digital release marks the first time that a new Bible translation has launched in a digital format prior to publication in a print format.
"The publishing industry broke numerous records this year with eBook sales, and we are proud that the NIV Bible was among the bestsellers during the Christmas season," said Moe Girkins, president and CEO of Zondervan. "We are encouraged by this early enthusiasm for the updated NIV text and anticipate continued momentum as we introduce additional digital NIV products leading up to the print launch in March 2011."
Alongside the eBook launch Zondervan initiated the Christmas BUY ONE, GIVE ONE campaign. For every digital copy of the updated NIV Bible sold through Jan. 4, 2011, Zondervan and Biblica donated a Hindi New Testament to a family in India. Biblica is the worldwide publisher and translation sponsor of the NIV Bible and a global Bible translation, publishing and Bible engagement ministry. Biblica expects to donate nearly 20,000 copies of the all-new Hindi translation of the New Testament.
"The mission of the NIV has always been about making God’s word accessible," said Keith Danby, international CEO of Biblica. Every time someone buys an NIV, a percentage of the money they spend is set aside to support Biblica’s global Bible translation ministry. The BUY ONE, GIVE ONE campaign brings a new element to this outreach by tying in a one-for-one donation to a region of the world in need of receiving God’s Word in their language."
The Bible is the bestselling book in history and the NIV Bible is the bestselling version year after year, selling more than 400 million copies since its first full publication in 1978. Following the launch of the newly designed NIV eBook, Zondervan plans to continue to release several new NIV eBooks, apps and digital products by the end of 2011. Print products featuring the updated NIV are scheduled for release in March 2011.
The NIV update was completed in the fall of 2010 after years of rigorous translation work by the Committee on Bible Translation (CBT — www.NIV-CBT.org The CBT was formed in 1965 to create a modern English Bible translation from the oldest and best-attested biblical manuscripts. Since the most recent NIV update in 1984, the CBT has continued to meet every year in accordance with the NIV charter, which requires constant monitoring of developments in biblical scholarship and English usage and the reflection of these developments in periodic updates to the text. The members of CBT, drawn from various denominations and from some of the finest academic institutions in the world, solicited and received input from scholars, pastors, missionaries and lay persons and reviewed every proposal, many of which led to revisions to the text.
"People are telling us they would love to see the Word of God be #1 on the best-seller lists, and it is exciting and humbling to see their love for the updated NIV achieve that. The Bible is in fact the best-selling book of all time and sells more than any other book every year, but the sales are diluted between multiple English translations and bindings," said Chip Brown, senior vice president and publisher of Bibles at Zondervan. "Millions of people unwrapped an iPad, Kindle, Nook or other e-reader during the holiday season, leading to an industry-wide spike in eBook sales, and we are delighted that the NIV Bible was among consumers’ most desired eBooks to download."
Zondervan was the first publisher to have Bibles available in Apple’s iBookstore at the launch of the iPad. In total, the company has published more than 30 Bible titles for eBook readers, including the iPad, Kindle, Nook, Sony Reader, etc. The NIV Study Bible consistently ranks among Zondervan’s top digital products.
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