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Imago publishing

From EverybodyWiki Bios & Wiki

Imago Publishing Ltd is a book production business offering print management, consultancy and outsourced production facilities to the international publishing industry. The company's headquarters are in Thame, Oxfordshire.


Set up in 1980 by Richard Hayes and Erik Pordes, Imago offered a new approach to book production for the UK publishing industry. At that time, the outsourcing of print buying and production was unknown. Print buying, as the largest expenditure for publishers, was always controlled and managed in-house, unlike creative editorial and design functions. Printing was largely carried out locally or by large locally represented European printing factories and was easily monitored and controlled without outside help.

However, at that time, a revolution in printing was taking place in the Far East, and in particular in Singapore and Hong Kong, where a very competitively priced high-quality print export industry was being created with the support of pioneering co-edition publishers like Marshall Cavendish (where both Hayes and Pordes learned their trade), Paul Hamlyn and Octopus. The potential for print cost savings were great, but for most UK publishers access to, management, control and supervision of such manufacturing was daunting, and would only be feasible with the right third party partner offering expertise and support. At this time, when few publishers had access to Asian suppliers, Imago established production offices in Singapore (1983), Hong Kong (1987) and subsequently in China, Malaysia and India to help monitor and control the manufacturing process at source. The company also expanded its sales operations by setting up sales teams in New York, California, Sydney, Paris and most recently São Paulo.

Imago's expansion has seen it move beyond publishing into new areas such as the toy and gift market, although its main activities remain print broking, product sourcing and the outsourcing of production / print buying functions for the publishing industry.


The company started the Imago Training School, from its headquarters in Thame, running a range of bespoke and open courses designed specifically for the book publishing industry. Established in 2002, the courses cover book and related print production and other core publishing areas including: digital publishing, product safety, Adobe InDesign, colour management, paper, rights and editorial.


In 2013, the company acquired and for a while ran WEbook, an online writing community geared towards finding new writers and helping them on their path to publication. However, in common with other similar platforms, Imago had difficulty in developing a commercially viable model for the business.

Also in 2013, Imago launched Albury Books, a personalised publishing platform and online bookstore for authors.


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