Klaus Flugge founded Andersen Press in autumn 1976 and went on to publish acclaimed writer/illustrators such as David McKee, Tony Ross, Satoshi Kitamura, Sir Quentin Blake, and Chris Riddell.

In 1999, he was the first publisher to receive the Eleanor Farjeon Award for his outstanding contribution to children’s books, and in 2010 he became the first publisher to be awarded Honorary Membership of the Youth Libraries Group. In 2013 Flugge was made an honorary citizen of the City of Bologna in recognition of his commitment to children’s books abroad. He celebrated the 40th anniversary of Andersen Press in 2016 by establishing the Klaus Flugge award, which is awarded to the most promising and exciting newcomer to children’s picture book illustration.

Flugge will be presented with the award later today at a special reception celebrating the International Excellence Awards winners and the Lifetime Achievement Award. The award recognizes “an individual who has made a truly significant mark in the sphere of global publishing,” and previous winners include Hiroshi Hayakawa of Hayakawa Publishing, Margaret Busby of Allison & Busby, and Nigel Newton of Bloomsbury Publishing.

Gareth Rapley, director of the London Book Fair, said: “We are delighted to name Klaus Flugge the recipient of this year’s Lifetime Achievement Award. For nearly five decades, Klaus has been a luminary in children’s publishing, bringing incredible stories and phenomenal illustrations to millions of children across the globe. His passion for championing emerging talent is hugely inspiring.”

Diana Gerald, CEO at BookTrust, said: “I’m delighted to hear that the legendary Klaus Flugge is the recipient of the London Book Fair’s Lifetime Achievement Award. He is behind so many of the tremendous books which have got children to love reading over the decades. In doing this, he will have transformed so many lives as those children reaped the benefits of becoming regular readers. From the sweetest of picture books including David McKee’s Elmer, all the way to Melvin Burgess’s hard hitting YA novel Junk, and everything in between... It’s a spectacular legacy.”