Singapore. Population: 5.6 million. Library members: 2.4 million. Library loans: 33 million

Singapore’s National Library Board made the headlines briefly earlier this year when Singapore joined the US and Canada in the notional OverDrive One Million Club. That is, a country where OverDrive saw over one million digital downloads. Not such a surprise given almost half the population are library members, and that in 2016 the Singapore Read More …

Spanish libraries lent 60 million print books and 130,000 ebooks in 2017. Or did they? A look at Public Libraries 2020’s curious numbers

With a population of 46 million Spain is fielding 4,600 public libraries – one for every 10,000 citizens, and 8.6 million adults have visited said libraries in 2017 – almost 19% of the population. But while 60 million print books were borrowed from Spanish libraries in 2017, just 126,000 ebooks were downloaded. That’s according to Read More …

The Punjab gets 20 new digital libraries, but easy access to ebooks is still a distant dream in Pakistan

While Pakistan has had digital libraries for much of this century (the Higher Education Commission launched the National Digital Library programme  in 2004) ebooks remain rare in the country, with the Big 5 western ebook retailers indifferent and local players yet to emerge. The latest news from the Punjab that twenty e-libraries have been established Read More …

Ebook distributor StreetLib partners with China’s CNPIEC

Hard on the heels of the announcement StreetLib is launching in India, comes news of a distribution deal with China’s CNPIEC, as part of StreetLib’s global expansion programme. State-owned CNPIEC, aka the China National Publications Import & Export (Group) Corporation, will be distributing StreetLib’s catalogue to thousands of Chinese libraries via the e-reading platform CNPereading. And yes, the Read More …

The Hot Sheet Reviewed – first February 2018 edition

The Hot Sheet is a publishing industry news-sheet for authors, produced every two weeks by Porter Anderson and Jane Friedman, and reviewed here every other Sunday as one of the best bi-weekly industry overviews available to authors. We’re not interested in delivering breaking news, but perspective on stories that are likely to retain meaning for your long-term decision Read More …

“Connecting countries through literacy” – Malta’s President at the Sofia City Library, Bulgaria

Malta’s President Marie-Louise Coleiro Preca, on a state visit to Bulgaria, visited the Sofia City Library, which often works with the Maltese National Literacy Agency on educational and literacy initiatives between the two countries. Addressing an audience of adults and children in the Bulgarian capital, President Coleiro Preca said that, a country that appreciates books is a Read More …

StreetLib, PublishDrive and Bookwire gear up for the global ebook markets game. First, Latin America

While the established American aggregators Smashwords, Draft2Digital, Bookbaby, etc, maintain their focus on their domestic market, with token efforts towards the international marketplace, their European rivals are carving up the rest of the world between them, with Germany’s Bookwire, Hungary’s PublishDrive and Italy’s StreetLib leading the way. Bookwire has a strong presence in Brazil, especially Read More …

Is Japan’s Rakuten the second biggest player in the western ebook and audiobook markets?

I’ve long been a lone voice on the indie circuit advocating authors take digital libraries seriously. Admittedly back in 2011 it wasn’t so easy to get into OverDrive, but doing what isn’t easy is what separates the career author from the rest. As I said four years ago back in January 2014, Too many indie Read More …

OverDrive supplies the UAE’s first digital library

Back in May Book Expo New York hosted an event titled Reaching the Arab World – the New Gateway Hub – The Sharjah Publishing City Initiative. Given the panel comprised Ahmed Al Ameri, Former Director of the Sharjah International Book Fair and Head of the Sharjah Book Authority, alongside the CEOs of Ingram and OverDrive, Read More …

World’s first digital business library launches in Singapore

When it comes to doing digital business in SE Asia, Singapore is often the first port of call, operating as a digital super-highway junction, a conduit and springboard for access to SE Asia and to south Asia countries like India. Amazon, for example, handles its India digital operations through its Singapore base. For some while Read More …