Keter Publishing House is a public company
based in Jerusalem operating through two independent divisions; publishing and
The company was originally established
solely as a publishing house, primarily in the field of scientific translations
and works of non-fiction, all in the English language and under a number of
different imprints. During the first decade of activity the company expanded
rapidly and gained recognition in Israel as the leading publisher in English of
original non-fiction titles which eventually led to the start of publishing in
Hebrew in the mid 70's of all genres – publishing in Hebrew is now the core
activity and continues today under the "Keter Books" imprint. During
this period Keter also established a manufacturing division providing turnkey
state-of-the-art book productions for the Israeli market, trading under the
name "Keter Press". The company has maintained its dominance in both
areas ever since and is an acknowledged market leader in the high quality of
its titles and the excellence of its manufactured products for the publishing
industry in Israel and for its customers abroad.
The company, whose original name was The
Israel Program for Scientific Translations (IPST), was founded in 1958. During
the first years company activity revolved around the scientific translations of
Russian manuscripts into English, primarily for the National Science Foundation
of America. This was a major commitment that continued without interruption
until the dissolution of the Iron Curtain and the beginning of wide ranging
cultural exchange between the East and West.
At the same time the company established an
independent imprint for non-fiction publishing in the English language. This
activity flourished with a number of significant coproductions together with
American and British publishers.
Meanwhile Keter acquired the publishing
rights for the many times stalled Encyclopaedia Judaica. This is undoubtedly
one of the most ambitious publishing enterprises ever attempted in Israel. The
first 16 volume edition was published in 1972 and was sold, with the addition
of bi-annual update volumes, throughout the world.
In the year 2000 Encyclopaedia Judaica was
named one of the fifty most valued cultural assets of the twentieth century. In
due course Keter carried out a complete revision and update for Encyclopaedia
Judaica Second Edition which was published in 21 volumes in 2006 under license
by The Gale Group, a leading American publisher specializing in works of
reference. The second edition of Encyclopedia Judaica received the 2007
Dartmouth Medal for best work of nonfiction in the US.
In the late 1970s Keter became a Hebrew
publishing house, focusing at first on Israeli fiction and books for children.
Keter later expanded to become a leading publisher of nonfiction and albums.
The former Israeli president Chaim Herzog and the former foreign minister Abba
Eban were among the members of Keter's Board of Directors.
Keter went public in 1986, and to this day
is still the only publishing house in Israel that is traded on the stock
exchange. In 1992 the company was bought by Arledan, a public investment
- The manufacturing division
The decision to set up an independent
printing and book-binding factory in Jerusalem in the mid 60's was based
firstly on the strategic decision that Encyclopaedia Judaica must be
manufactured in Israel. Further, that there could be no compromise on the
highest standards of quality, the need for fully mechanized production and the
latest technology. Since no such fully integrated factory as yet existed in
Israel this became part of the company vision.
Beginning in the second half of the 1960s, Keter assembled and invested
in the people and the technologies for prepress, printing and bindery and was
quickly recognized for the exceptional quality of its productions and for the
ground-breaking use of computerized systems for typesetting the Judaica as well
as for management control. Having set
such high standards for innovation and quality Keter Press continues to invest
in state-of-the-art technologies from pre-press to printing and binding,
providing an all under-one-roof service for Israel's vibrant publishing market.
Keter Books – The publishing house
Since the 1980s, Keter has focused on
nurturing and promoting original Israeli fiction while developing excellent
series of translated literature, fiction, crime novels, science fiction, books
for children and young adults, nonfiction, travelers' guides, cookbooks and
works of reference.
Keter has published about 4,000 titles in
Hebrew, including works by prominent Israeli and international authors.
Israeli authors: Shulamit Lapid, Ronit
Matalon, Tamar Arad, Mishka Ben David, Dan Benaya Seri, Ilana Bernstein, Yoav
Blum, Dror Burstein, Lizzie Doron, Ofir Touche Gafla, Yoel Hoffmann, Amnon
Jackont, Sayed Kashua, Alona Kimchi, Orly Krauss-Winer, Yair Lapid, Iris Leal,
Uri Levron, Savyon Liebrecht, D. A. Mishani, Amos Oz, Kinneret Rosenbloom,
Tzruya Shalev, Zvi Yanai, Michal Zamir, Shemi Zarhin, Tom Segev, Uri Orlev, Ami
Rubinger, Nurit Zarchi,
Translated authors: David Foenkinos, Paolo
Giordano, Barbara Kingsolver, Raymond Chandler, Howard Jacobson, W.G. Sebald,
Nathan Englander, Douglas Adams, Haruki Murakami, Salman Rushdie, Truman
Capote, Eva Illouz, Ken Robinson, Claude Lanzmann, Timothy Snyder, Lincoln
Peirce, Lemony Snicket, Michael Scott, Lois Lowry, Christopher Paolini, Dr.
Seuss, Judy Blume, Philip Pullman and Janusz Korczak.
In addition to its publishing activity
Keter operates an independent warehousing and book distribution service . Apart
from Keter Books the company has exclusive distribution rights for the
following publishers: Matar, Maariv Books, Ivrit, Keshet, Rimonim, Hakibbutz
Hameuchad, The New Library and Sifriat HaPoalim.
Keter is the only distributor with the
right to deliver direct to all the book chain stores.