Klaus Flugge was born in Germany in 1934. He trained as a bookseller in Leipzig but his political views forced him to flee East Germany in 1953, arriving eventually in New York in 1957. There he worked for Abelard-Schuman who, in 1962, asked him to run their London office. He became Managing Director and Publisher of adult and children’s books initially finding British artists, like Quentin Blake, Charles Keeping and John Vernon Lord, for American manuscripts. Soon thereafter Klaus began originating his own books, which included titles by Edward Ardizzone, Joan Aiken and David McKee whose first book was published in 1964. It was called Two-Can Toucan – a book that is still in print with Andersen Press today.
In 1976, Klaus set up his own publishing company – Andersen Press – named in tribute to Hans Christian Andersen. The first book on the list was Goldilocks and the Three Bears by the then newly-discovered Tony Ross. The Andersen Press list now consists of over 2000 published titles, the majority of which are still in print. Andersen Press specialises in picture books and children’s fiction and publishes some of the best loved names in the field, including picture books by Ruth Brown, Michael Foreman, Satoshi Kitamura, David McKee, Tony Ross, Emma Chichester Clark, Max Velthuijs, Jeanne Willis, Hiawyn Oram and Susan Varley. The fiction list includes prize-winning titles by Melvin Burgess, Sandra Glover, Julia Jarman and Jason Wallace. Andersen Press has published a number of titles that have become modern classics, including I Want My Potty by Tony Ross, Badger’s Parting Gifts by Susan Varley, Not Now Bernard by David McKee, Angry Arthur by Satoshi Kitamura and
Who's in the Loo? by Jeanne Willis and Adrian Reynolds. Probably the most well known character on the list is Elmer the Patchwork Elephant, created by David McKee.
Klaus Flugge received the Eleanor Farjeon Award, for outstanding contribution to children’s books, in 1999. In 2010 he became only the second publisher to be awarded honorary membership of the Youth Libraries Group.