Since it was established in 1990 AST has become one of the largest book publishing groups in Russia and responsible for about 13% of Russian book production (number of copies). AST Publishing comprises of several imprints including Astrel, Avanta+, Premiera-Media, Corpus, comic book and manga publisher Comics Factory. It also owns a book-store chain called "Bukva".

AST has a wide portfolio of highly popular brands and publishes a vast range of books, from classics to modern bestsellers, educational and professional books, books for travel and leisure.

Among AST’s authors are winners of numerous book prizes including Boris Akunin, Mikhail Veller, Dmitri Gluhovsky, Alexander Kabakov, Vladimir Sorokin, Elena Chizova.

AST is experimenting with different ways of presenting content to readers. Its two multi-media projects creating the post-apocalyptic scenario S.T.A.L.K.E.R. and Metro 2033 Universe are platforms that attract thousands of customers. More than 3 million books published under the S.T.A.L.K.E.R. brand have been sold, which makes the project a world leader in book-based game products.