Finding a Distributor in Hungary for the Hungarian translation, Az Urantia könyv

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Henk Mylanus
Az Urantia könyv

by Henk Mylanus, trustee, European sales manager, Brittany, France

Finding a good distributor for European language translations of The Urantia Book is always a difficult job, but finding one in Hungary proved to be most difficult. Let me explain.

When we were flying to Chicago in April 2010, we heard a passenger in the row behind us say to her companion, “Look at that enormous explosion!”

At that moment we were flying over Iceland, and we witnessed the volcanic eruption of the Icelandic Eyjafjallajökul, which disrupted all European air travel for six days, and we had to stay in Chicago for about ten days before we could fly back to Europe.

We were supposed to fly to Budapest to attend the Budapest International Book Fair, but the fair was over before we could reach Budapest. Our first attempt to find a distributor ended in a Force Majeure situation.

Our second attempt began after we signed a distribution contract in Poland with an independent distributor in Lodz. We drove through southern Poland, passing through Brno and Bratislava to arrive in Budapest.

We had done an extensive Internet search for independent distributors but could not find a suitable one for the Hungarian translation. As is our usual practice, we started talking to bookshop owners to discover where their supplies came from, and shortly thereafter we had a list of three independent distributors.

We began our negotiations with the largest of the three, ending with the signing of a contract, which had to be countersigned by the then absent owner, who was on holiday. We had a difficult choice to make: Wait in Budapest for two weeks for the owner to return or go home and trust that he would countersign the contract. Two weeks in Budapest would be quite expensive, so we decided to go home. Two weeks later, we received an email stating without explanation that the owner refused to sign the contract and would not distribute Az Urantia könyv.

We decided to try a different approach and did an extensive Internet search for publishers of literature. We had communicated with the Hungarian translator, and he gave us a list of two hundred publishers in Budapest. Our shortlist of eight companies contained the most promising partners for a distribution arrangement.

We booked another flight to Budapest in May 2011, but disaster struck as I had a near-fatal accident. Any possibility for travel was now cancelled for quite a long time. Once again, our third attempt ended in a Force Majeure situation.

More than a year later, in August 2012, we decided to drive to Budapest and visit the eight companies and try to negotiate a contract. Our fourth attempt! And “presto,” on the second day we came into contact with Bioenergetic, an ideal partner because this publisher was interested in representing foreign publishers and making their distribution network available. Our second meeting took place one week later, and we signed a distribution contract.

We shipped several pallets of books to Bioenergetic, and they distributed the entire lot to about thirty-five clients. Book sales began on November 8, 2012, and by the end of December, a total of 160 copies of Az Urantia könyv had sold mainly in Budapest, but also in neighboring countries like Slovakia.

Prospects for 2013 are estimated to be promising.

Better late than never!

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