For anyone who missed it, StreetLib began the New Year by launching digital portals for authors and publishers in 21 countries across 6 continents, including 5 in Africa.

As explained at the time, StreetLib is the publisher behind The New Publishing Standard, and while TNPS is not a StreetLib promotional vehicle and we don’t usually carry StreetLib news, StreetLib’s global expansion clearly falls within the TNPS global publishing industry news remit.

StreetLib completes January tranche of global expansion. 21 countries on 6 continents

With that in mind I reproduce the StreetLib press release below without further commentary.

[Press Release] StreetLib launches digital publishing portals in 20 African countries in second stage of 2019 global expansion

Loreto, Italy 28 February 2019.

The Italy-based digital books distributor StreetLib has concluded the February tranche of its global expansion programme, launching author and publisher portals in 20 African nations plus one more each in the Caribbean and Oceania, taking its total to 45 countries.

In January StreetLib’s African portal launches were in Nigeria, Ghana, Kenya, South Africa and Egypt, as part of a 21 country 6 continent global roll-out.

For February StreetLib added one new Caribbean nation ,  Montserrat, and one new Oceania nation, Samoa, but focused on Africa with publisher portal launches in the following countries:

BotswanaEritreaEthiopiaLesothoLiberiaMalawiMauritiusNamibiaRwandaSeychellesSierra LeoneSomalilandSouth SudanSudanSwazilandTanzaniaThe GambiaUgandaZambia and Zimbabwe.

In early March StreetLib will complete its roll-out across the African continent, providing an author and publisher portal to every African nation.

StreetLib CEO Giacomo D’Angelo said:

The global book markets have been a focus for StreetLib since we began in 2006, a year before the Amazon Kindle store launched. But our role as a gateway distributor providing a conduit for digital content into the ebook retail, library and subscription services has always been limited by the realities of the digital distribution infrastructure, which has failed to keep up with the growth of the internet. And nowhere more so than in Africa.

Today there are more people on line in Africa than there are in North America, Latin America or the EU.

Kenya, for example, has more people online than Spain. Nigeria has more people online than the UK or Germany.

In September 2017 we launched an online journal, The New Publishing Standard (TNPS), to try stimulate debate about, and accelerate the development of, the global book market, with a strong focus on Africa. In fact the TNPS Editor-in-Chief Mark Williams lives in West Africa.

This year we supplement our words with concrete action, as the second month of our global expansion shows.

We believe every author, anywhere in the world, has the right to be published and read anywhere in the world, including anywhere in Africa. An impossible dream just ten years ago, and even today it is still easier for a publisher in one African country to sell books in the USA, UK or France than in a neighbouring Africa country.

StreetLib is determined to fix that problem.

While books in all languages — including indigenous African languages — can be uploaded to StreetLib through our author and publisher portals, not all languages are supported by all our retailer and library partners. Amazon, for example, supports only one African language, Afrikaans.

To solve that problem we have the StreetLib International Store where, appropriately in this UNESCO Year of Indigenous Languages, books in all languages can be uploaded and sold, and anyone anywhere in the world can buy from, in multiple currencies.

At StreetLib we believe the global book market, valued at $143 billion as long ago as 2016 and now much higher, has enormous potential for growth, especially in Africa.

We invite authors and publishers across Africa to partner with us to reach readers across the continent and around the globe with no up-front costs.