Evident at Annual European Gathering
European directory publishers are adjusting to many of the same realities
as their colleagues in the United States (rising competition, an increasing
complex execution challenge and a looming challenge from search engines),
there is a strong sense of confidence among European publishers in their
ability to thrive through these changes. That, in our view, sums up the
mood at last week's European Association of Directory and Database Publishers'
annual congress last week in Budapest, Hungary.
A membership survey
summarized in the EADP annual report, made available to the more than
200 delegates in attendance, tells a pretty clear story about the state
of the directories business in Europe. Average 2002 revenue growth for
business-to-consumer publishers was 6.6 percent, with a median figure
of 3.85 percent. Additionally, 76 percent of business-to-consumer publishers
claimed their electronic publishing activities were profitable last year.
While growth is down
somewhat from the previous year, this has not dampened optimism. Among
business-to-consumer publishers, 100 percent answered "yes" when asked
if they were "optimistic about the future development of the directory