Trade and Reference

We had great success with young fiction series such as Kitty and Isadora Moon, the latter of which supports the journey from learning to read to reading independently, is published in 31 languages, and sold more than one million books globally in the year.


Our partnership with the BBC’s 500 Words competition continued to provide important insights into the way children write and use language, with almost 50 per cent of UK schools now participating and our involvement reaching the ten year milestone. We received the millionth children’s story into the Oxford Children’s Corpus and analysis of the entries led to Children’s Word of the Year 2019 being announced as ‘Brexit’ due to a 464 per cent increase in its usage since last year’s competition.

There was an increased focus on parents being integral to a child’s learning journey, from wellbeing, social, and emotional needs, to educational development, language acquisition, and pre-school learning. As such, there is a growing audience of proactive parents and guardians looking for support and resources, which was heightened by the coronavirus outbreak and shift to home-education. In response, we offered parental support through Oxford Owl for Home and home learning products such as Read With Oxford and Progress With Oxford, all of which saw huge uptake, especially in March.


The print dictionaries market remains challenging as customers turn more and more to digital solutions. Even so, in Australia and New Zealand, our dictionaries market share increased slightly and we saw growth across our dictionaries, trade, and children’s portfolios thanks in part to our partnership with education publishing and distribution company Edify.