Cyber Monday Amazon’s biggest shopping day ever. But still way behind Alibaba. What future the international Kindle stores?

Cyber Monday 2017 broke records in the US. Amazon claimed it was even bigger than Prime Day, and it is believed to have accounted for over half of Black Friday’s online sales. Pretty good going from what is often termed the biggest e-commerce company on the planet. But by what definition? By market capitalisation Amazon comes Read More …

Book-swap parties trending in India

This won’t go down well with the digital fundamentalists who believe print belongs to a different era, but book-swap parties, where eager readers get together with other readers to swap books, is a growing trend in India. And it makes perfect sense. In a country of over a billion people the chances of you sitting Read More …

Brazil book sales buoyant as Justice League breaks box-office records

Justice League, the latest superhero film from Warner Bros and DC Comics, has not been the spectacular success it was hoped. At least. not in the USA. But globally it has outperformed expectations. And that’s just at the box office. Plenty more revenue streams to roll in from DVD sales of course and, this being Read More …

Waterstones to open five new bookstores in time for Christmas. Barnes & Noble, please take notes

As Barnes & Noble continues to struggle, management will be looking on enviously as its British counterpart, Waterstones, defies the odds to rebuild a national bookstore chain that not long ago seemed a hopeless cause. As reported here last month, Waterstones is being lined up for re-sale. Waterstone’s was rescued from near bankruptcy several years Read More …

Ireland a “thriving” and “hugely important” book market for HarperCollins. Here’s why

With a population of just 4.7 million the Republic of Ireland sold an impressive 10.9 million books last year to the value of €130.9 million. That of course is according to Nielsen BookScan, so by no means the entire book market. The Bookseller this past week reported, HarperCollins UK is doubling the size of its Read More …

Yaoundé Conference – analogue thinking in a digital age. African publishers needs to embrace digital, not re-invent First World battles.

It’s a sad commentary on the state of Cameroon publishing that the best overview of the industry I can find is from 2005. That may be about to change. This past week in the Cameroon capital Yaoundé a conference on the future of African publishing was wide-ranging in its discussions. Titled ‘The Publishing Industry in Read More …

Iceland exports its authors as a prelude to exporting its books

Who’d be an Icelandic author? With a population of less than half a million and a language pretty much unique to the island, there is of course no significant publishing industry in the country, and very little chance of earning a living as a writer in the home market. Remarkably this hasn’t stopped Iceland having Read More …

Social media and Instagram are making books sexy again – in NIgeria

Time was, if you had heard of an African author at all, it would be either an author in the US or Britain that originally came from Africa, or a prize-winning African author that had attracted the attention of the western publishing establishment. Put simply, we in the west got to read only that African Read More …

Tencent joins the half-trillion club, and look how close it is to Amazon…

On Tuesday Tencent, the Chinese e-commerce titan, leapfrogged Facebook to become the fifth most valuable company on the planet. China now holds two of the top six places in the world rankings for market capitalization, and while Apple is still too far ahead to be dislodged, both Tencent and Alibaba are within shouting distance of Read More …