19 December 2018
The #ReadTheOnePercent bookshop

All images credit: Sarah Lee / The Guardian

To encourage ongoing grassroots support, and to help the bookshop not just reach but beat its target of £30,000, Penguin Random House is pledging £15,000 in the form of match-funding to support the #ReadTheOnePercent bookshop. This means that the company pledges to match all donations made to the crowdfunding campaign from today, up to a total of £15,000, to incentivise people to continue to donate. The bookshop is currently a pop-up in Brixton, London, ran by independent publishers Knights Of, which is filled only with books featuring black, Asian or minority ethnic protagonists.

Since launching its crowdfunding campaign earlier this month, the bookshop has already seen a fantastic response: receiving over £16,000 in donations from over 300 supporters. To encourage ongoing grassroots support, and to help the bookshop not just reach but beat its target of £30,000, Penguin Random House is pledging £15,000 in the form of match-funding. This means that the company pledges to match all donations made to the crowdfunding campaign, up to a total of £15,000, to incentivise people to continue to donate.  

The funds raised as part of the campaign will enable #ReadTheOnePercent to create a base in Brixton as a permanent bookstore for a year, as well as allow it to hire an inclusive specialist children’s bookseller to work in the shop.  The funding will also help the bookshop build and run its pop-ups in Liverpool, Edinburgh and Birmingham, as well as exploring opportunities for further partnerships with independent bookshops elsewhere in the UK and Ireland. This will be supplemented by a programme of public events so that readers all across the country can see themselves in books.

Aimée Felone, Knights Of Co-Founder: "We are delighted to have Penguin Random House match-funding our crowdfund! The #ReadtheOnePercent campaign has far surpassed our expectations and has highlighted demand for a permanent kids bookshop. Having this support of means we’re not only extending our reach towards a community that has expressed a desire for inclusive books but ensures inclusive representation in books reaching across the UK and Ireland."

Rebecca Sinclair, Brand and Communications Director at Penguin Random House, said: “It’s widely acknowledged that the publishing industry has work to do to ensure books better reflect our society. While many publishers are now working hard to change this, the #ReadTheOnePercent bookshop is playing a critical role in highlighting this urgent need and celebrating books which are truly representative. It’s a brilliant initiative that captured the attention of many of us at Penguin Random House so we are thrilled to make this donation which we hope will help the bookshop smash its target and achieve its ambitions.”

The #ReadTheOnePercent bookshop

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