The Client

Founded in 1929, Faber & Faber is the most iconic independent arts and literary publisher in the world.

The Brief

Faber & Faber receive thousands of permission request each year from authors and other organisations seeking to licence their copyrights. There was typically a wait of between 4 and 6 weeks before a licence request was processed. The licensing team at Faber had identified a number of key requirements for the permissions system;

  • Automated creation and sending of personalised licences based on user input and licence templates
  • Ability to draft and change licences before they are sent to users
  • Automated pricing structure based on number of parameters including territory of use, author, title, request type and number of words/lines or pages requested for use.
  • Different rights on a per title and territory of use basis
  • Automatic redirection of users to alternative rights holder where Faber & Faber did not hold rights
  • Taking payment for licences online
  • Responsive design that works on all devices

The Solution

The pricing and rights structure required for this project presented a unique challenge for Concurrent. There was no equivalent system in the marketplace which performed the level of automation required to streamline the permissions process. We worked closely with Faber & Faber to ensure that the all the possible different types of licence requests were managed correctly and that all licence requests were given the correct price for their territory of use. The most difficult challenge was hiding the complexity of the pricing model from the user and making sure the process for them was seamless. Using the Agile Development methodology Faber were able to test and use the solution over several iterations to make sure we got it all right.


The main reason for introducing the online licensing system was to reduce wait time for users applying for licences. This has been dramatically reduced from between between 4 and 6 weeks to around nothing for 90% of licence requests as they can now be purchased online instantly. This has massively reduced the workload on the licensing team at Faber and Faber as the process of creating and agreeing a licence and fee has been automated and streamlined by the online tools. Faber and Faber have also seen an increase in licence requests as users are more inclined to use this system to request licences.

The end product is a first of its kind in the industry and subsequently we are continuing to partner with Faber & Faber to offer a white-labelled version of the licensing application.