The digital audiobook industry has been growing exponentially for the past four years and the big five publishers are generating the lionshare of revenue. Penguin Random House, Hachette, HarperCollins and S&S accounted for 45% of all US sales from April 2017 to January 2018. Amazon-owned publishing imprints, such as Audible Studios and Brilliance Audio account for a fifth of all US audio sales. But a significant minority of these are sales of titles where audio rights that have been sub-licensed from self-published authors, the Big Five, or other traditional publishers.
In the United States audiobooks generated over $495 million dollars and most of the revenue was from Audible and iTunes. iTunes has a license agreement with Audible to power their audiobook store on iBooks, so basically Audible completely dominates.
Michael Kozlowski is the Editor in Chief of Good e-Reader. He has been writing about audiobooks and e-readers for the past ten years. His articles have been picked up by major and local news sources and websites such as the CBC, CNET, Engadget, Huffington Post and the New York Times.