A foreign rights agreement is a contract to that allows a publisher to translate and publish a book within a certain territory. These contracts are beneficial for authors who would otherwise have difficulty penetrating the markets in those territories by themselves. Selling foreign rights allows an author to profit multiple times from the same work. In fact, in some countries, foreign rights can be sold for more money than what the original book generates in the author’s home country. That’s why a smart contract strategy for an author would be to execute several contracts with different publishers, each of which is best positioned to promote and distribute the book in a certain language within a specific territory.
Authors should be particularly careful not to accidentally give away foreign rights to publishers who don’t publish much in foreign countries. E.g., what typically happens is that a publisher offers a new author a publishing contract where subsidiary rights (such as foreign rights) are licensed to a publisher that doesn’t have a capacity to exercise them to author’s full advantage. E.g., it’s a publisher that only publishes English language books that it markets only in the United States. No foreign distribution system. Authors should take care not to convey rights to publishers who have no intention or capacity to exercise those rights.
AGREEMENT made this ___ day of _____________________, 2020.
1. The Proprietor hereby warrants that the Proprietor controls the rights covered by this Agreement and grants to the Publisher the exclusive right to publish in the _______________________ language the work now titled __________________ (hereinafter referred to as the Work) in volume form in the _______________________ language, subject to the terms and conditions following:
2. The Publisher agrees to publish the Work in the _______________________ language within ___ months from the date of this Agreement. If the Publisher fails to do so, this Agreement will automatically terminate and all rights granted hereunder shall revert to the Proprietor without prejudice to any claims which the Proprietor may have for monies due/or damages/or otherwise.
3. The Publisher shall pay to the Proprietor a non-returnable advance of _____ to be accounted against all earnings, payable upon execution of this Agreement by both parties as follows:
on account of the following royalties based on the retail price of each copy sold less VAT:
8% of the retail price on the first 5,000 copies sold;
10% of the retail price on the next 3,000 copies sold;
12% of the retail price on all copies sold thereafter
On bulk sales of at least 500 copies at a discount of at least 50%, royalties shall be 10% of the publisher’s receipts on the first 1,000 copies sold; 12% on all copies sold thereafter. Royalties on bulk sales shall be payable within 30 days of receipt by the Publisher.
On special sales at the retail bookstores at discounts greater than 50% royalties shall be 08% of the Publisher’s net receipts on the first 5,000 copies sold, 10% on the next 5,000 copies sold, and 12% on all copies sold thereafter. (*“net receipts” meaning the monies paid to the Publishers by their customers according to the net invoices on actual sales less VAT and less discounts and allowances paid or granted to distribution partners.)
If any advance (or portion thereof), royalty due and payable to the Proprietor hereunder is not received by the Proprietor within sixty (60) days of the due date of such amount in accordance with this Agreement, then the Proprietor shall have the right to terminate this Agreement immediately by giving written notice to the Publisher, without prejudice to any other claims or rights of the Proprietor including, without limitation, the right to receive any other sums due hereunder; and all rights granted herein shall revert to the Proprietor.
4. The Publisher shall render detailed annual accounts for all sales of the Work to the 31st December in each year, and he shall deliver the amounts due according to the said accounts within 120 days thereafter. All monies due under the terms of this Agreement shall be converted into U.S. Dollars at the exchange rate on the day of payment. The books of account of the Publishers, so far as they relate to any matter arising out of this Agreement, shall be open to inspection by the Proprietor or his agent by appointment or at any reasonable time.
5. The translation of the Work, including the title, shall be made faithfully and accurately. Abbreviations, additions or any alterations in the text shall be made only with the prior consent of the Proprietor.
6. The Proprietor grants to the Publisher the right to use the original cover design and will provide the Publisher with open files for adapting the cover design to the local market.
7. The title will be published in the _________ imprint of _______________ with a dedicated logo and design. The Proprietor will present the name of the Publisher in every external publication or document (such as right guides) as _____________________.
8. The Proprietor grants to the Publisher the exclusive right to publish and sell the Work in electronic verbatim text form (herein referred to as e-book) in the _________________________ language throughout the world, subject to the following terms and conditions:
i. For the purpose of this Agreement, e-book shall mean the reproduction of the complete verbatim, non-dramatic, unenhanced text of the translated Work by way of any electronic, magnetic, digital or optical platform capable of storing and/or transmitting the Work, making it available to be displayed and read securely as a ‘book’ on a screen.
ii. The Publisher shall pay a royalty of twenty-five per cent (25%) of the Publisher’s net receipts. Net receipts shall mean the monies paid to the Publisher by its customers according to the net invoices on actual sales less VAT.
iii. The Publisher will ensure that their e-book edition is produced to a high standard. The Publisher will make all reasonable efforts to ensure that their e-book edition is secure.
iv. The Publisher will initiate an advance purchase of the e-book edition two months before the distribution of the print edition in all sales channels including bookstores.
9. The Proprietor grants to the Publisher the exclusive audio rights to record and sell copies of the _______________________ translation in unabridged Audio CD, mp3, and digital download forms throughout the world, subject to the following terms and conditions:
i. The recording of the Work shall be an exact, non-dramatized reading of the _______________________ text and no changes, additions or revisions to the text or the title shall be made without the Proprietor’s written approval.
ii. On sales of the Publisher’s audio editions of the Work the Publisher shall pay to the Proprietor a royalty of twenty percent (20%) of the net receipts by the Publisher on all copies sold.
10. The Publisher acknowledges that the copyright in the Work remains with the Proprietor. All copies of the translation published or licensed by the Publisher must bear an appropriate copyright notice in Proprietor’s name. In addition, the page on which the copyright notice appears must also include the title of the Work in English and credit to the original publisher of the Work. The name of the Proprietor shall appear in due prominence on the title page, cover and binding of every copy produced and on all advertisements.
11. Three (3) gratis copies of the Work in translated form shall be sent by the Publisher to the Proprietor on first publication.
12. All rights not specifically granted and assigned under the terms of this Agreement are reserved to the Proprietor.
13. This Agreement shall expire and all rights granted and assigned to the Publisher shall revert to the Proprietor: (a) if the Work is out of print or off the market in the _______________________ language and is not reprinted within 6 months after written request to do so is made to the Publisher by the Proprietor or her agent; or (b) in the event of bankruptcy or liquidation of the Publisher for any cause whatsoever; or (c) in the event of a material breach by either party if the material breach remains uncured after 30 days from the notice from the non-breaching party; or (d) if the Publisher repeatedly fails to respond to any written or electronic correspondence for more than 30 days.
14. The license granted to the Publisher shall irrevocably expire 9 (nine) years from the date of this Agreement without any further written notice, and all rights licensed herein shall revert to the Proprietor in full and unrestrictedly without prejudice to any monies then still due to the Proprietor.
15. In the event of the sale of copies as a remainder, the royalty to be paid to the Proprietor shall be 10% of the sum received by the Publisher. The Publishers shall not remainder any copies of the Work before two years after the date of his first publication of the Work. In the event of such remaindering, all rights granted under the terms of this Agreement shall revert to the Proprietor without any prejudice to any claim which the Proprietor may have for monies due and/or damages and/or otherwise.
16. If there are any inconsistencies or conflicts between the English original of this Agreement and any foreign language translation, the English version shall prevail. The failure of either party to exercise any of its rights under this Agreement for a breach thereof shall not be deemed to be a waiver of such rights. No amendment of, addition to or modification of this Agreement shall be effective unless reduced to writing and signed by the parties hereto. In the event one or more clauses of this Agreement are declared invalid, void, unenforceable or illegal, that shall not affect the validity of the remaining portions of this Agreement. This Agreement sets forth the entire agreement of the parties with respect to its subject matter, and replaces and supersedes any previous understandings between the parties on the subject, whether oral or written, express or implied.
IN WITNESS WHEREOF, the parties have executed this Agreement as of the date first written above.