Get to know


Urbane Publications is one of UK’s fastest growing independent publishers, committed to the discovery and publication of the books and authors you – and we - want to read.

Urbane is proud to champion diverse voices and ground-breaking titles, and support both established writers and daring debutants in reaching a global readership.

Matthew Smith

Managing Director

Kerry-Jane Lowery

Kerry-Jane believes that she has found with Urbane the perfect outlet for her creativity, global outlook and her love of words. Publishing the works of new and accomplished writers and business leaders will capitalise on her unusual and varied life experiences and international career.

She is a published author of a book on particle physics for CERN, launched by Brian Cox in 2008. She was the editorial manager of a Swiss glossy and a Canadian power sports e-magazine, and has edited several other authors. Kerry-Jane is bilingual French and speaks Spanish and German. She grew up in Portugal and Switzerland and has lived on every continent (bar Australia and Antarctica), often in extreme environments due to her humanitarian work for the ICRC. She has worked with prisoners of war, genociders, paramilitary groups, hostages, displaced populations and victims of violence. These experiences have given her a broad understanding of the human condition, so important in literature and business, and provided a foundation stone for her career in publishing.

At Urbane Publications we love books. We know you do too. Join us and dive into some extraordinary words.

Words always have the power and potential to excite, involve, inspire – and we live them at Urbane Publications. This is a journey of discovery – finding new voices, redefining genres, and engaging with a knowledgeable, enthused and energetic group of writers to publish the best books possible. Publishing isn’t simply about creating a range of bland, risk-averse shelf-fillers – readers deserve more than that – and authors deserve the originality of their stories to be championed.

Urbane was founded in 2014 and we’ve published over 150 titles since then, with our books available in all good bookshops – and, we hope, to be found in lots of to be read piles! In 2018 we will be focusing our commissioning and publishing on crime fiction and thrillers, contemporary and women’s fiction and literary fiction, as well as developing a brand new and very exciting business imprint. Do take the time to look through our titles, we’re sure you’ll find a treasure or two. These are books that reflect innovative and challenging work, but are also written to entertain, enthral and engage and our greatest measure of success is when you, the reader, discover a new idea or a writer you enjoy.

Publishing Director

Matthew Smith

Matthew is a publishing professional with over 25 years experience of discovering, creating, producing and selling books and developing valuable content.

Matthew has commissioned, consulted on and published over 3,000 titles, spanning print and digital content in global trade, academic, education and business markets. He has been a Waterstones department manager, highly successful commissioning editor, packager, and director, in a career that has spanned both ‘big five’ companies such as Pearson and Hodder Headline, and leading independents, including Routledge and Kogan Page. From page-turning ebook bestsellers to full-colour ‘coffee table’ titles, Matthew has published across a huge range of genres and formats. His reputation – and one that is promoted throughout the Urbane ethos – is founded on achieving joint targets, strategic, creative and commercial, through proactive collaboration.

But first and foremost Matthew is an avid reader, giving him the desire to always enable the author’s voice – and give every story a readership.

Perhaps one day Matthew will even write his own book. Maybe.

Matthew Smith


People we are working with

Signature Books UK

Signature Book Representation (UK) Ltd is a leading sales agency for independent publishing, and Urbane’s sales partner in the UK and Ireland. The very experienced sales force offers nationwide coverage, selling into Waterstones and independent bookshops; Bertrams and Gardners wholesalers; to the growing non-traditional market of online retailers; museums, art galleries and gift shops; and to library suppliers and academic booksellers.

Find out more

Combined Book Services

Combined Book Services is one of the leading independent UK book distributors, and is the official global distribution partner for Urbane Publications. The company has its origins in a business set up thirty years ago in Tonbridge, Kent by the ‘Hooks Bookshops’ chain to handle their direct mail fulfilment. In 2011, following the acquisition of new lists, CBS moved to a larger warehouse on the Paddock Wood Distribution Centre allowing space for further expansion.

Find out more

Baker & Taylor

Baker & Taylor, Urbane’s sales and distribution partner for all territories outside the UK, is the premier worldwide distributor of books, digital content and entertainment products. Established in the 19th century, they’ve come a long way since the days of delivering books by horse-drawn carriage, embracing the digital age and partnering with best-in-class companies to deliver Urbane’s books to leading retailers in the USA, Canada and beyond.

Find out more


Urbane’s rights opportunities are handled by a number of select agencies and consultants worldwide, specialising in specific genres and regions, including Rights2Consultants, Loredana, and Arrowsmith. Urbane organises rights representation around the world, selling directly to publishers in most territories, and working with trusted co-agents in China, Japan, Korea and Russia. The sales approach is a personal one, finding the best home for every book represented.