Storytel’s subscription royalties rose 6.4% in Q2. But is $0.20 per hour enough to keep publishers happy? Does the subscription model have a future?

At the start of this year Storytel changed its remuneration model for publishers, from a fixed payment per unit consumed to a rate per hour of consumption. Under the old model Storytel paid publishers between $1.81-$2.13 per book consumed, which disproportionately rewarded shorter works and penalized longer ones. It’s a debate we are all familiar Read More …

As OverDrive’s Libby partners with Apple’s CarPlay, how long before publishers start reigning in digital library audiobooks?

Thanks to a deal between Apple and Rakuten-OverDrive, the digital library app Libby is now compatible with Apple’s CarPlay in-car entertainment system. According to OverDrive the Libby app is now available from 90% of North American public libraries, and drivers with a library card and the CarPlay system can, select and navigate audiobooks with large, Read More …

Storytel marks its first year in Italy with a tripled catalogue size and an Originals launch

It’s one year since Storytel went head to head with Amazon’s Audible in Italy, and so far Storytel are keeping their consumer numbers quiet, but are more profligate with the catalogue figures. Having kicked off with just 1,300 Italian titles and “tens of thousands” of English-language titles it was clear Audible Italy was not going Read More …

In the audiobook market stakes, Bookbeat takes a surprise lead, adding 24 markets. Total 28. But this isn’t a gamechanger yet

With just 50,000 titles Bonnier’s Bookbeat is no match for Audible or Storytel in volume terms, and we shouldn’t see the sudden leap from 4 to 28 markets as a gamechanger for CEO Niclas Sandin. Sandin himself concedes as much. The press release Sandin optimistically states, We believe that the audio book can become one Read More …

Storytel launches in Germany, leaving Brazil, Thailand and South Korea to come for 2019

After the launch in Singapore earlier this year, Storytel was widely expected to follow through with Brazil and then Germany. South Korea had been confirmed for end of year, and Thailand, while not yet official, the prime candidate for the fifth new market for 2019. Stefan Tegenfalk, Head of Expansion at Storytel, said in a Read More …

StreetLib enters the global audiobook market. Partners with Il Narratore for production, and with Audible, Google Play, Storytel and others for distribution

StreetLib is the publisher behind The New Publishing Standard, and while TNPS is not a StreetLib promotional vehicle and we don’t routinely carry StreetLib news, StreetLib’s global expansion clearly falls within the TNPS global publishing industry news remit. As ever on such occasions, we re-print the StreetLib Press Release in full below without further TNPS commentary. Read More …

Amazon launches in UAE, home of UNESCO World Book Capital, with only third-party-seller books, no Kindle store and no Arab self-publishing option

The rebranding of online Arab marketplace Souq will surprise few. Two years after Amazon bought Souq it is now, for the UAE at least, rebranded as Amazon AE, and the previously reported January 2019 focus on opening up the Middle East to the US marketplace continues as expected. Middle East online bookstore Jamalon raises $10m Read More …

While Audible looks the other way, locked into Amazon’s roadmap, Poland’s Audioteka joins Storytel in Turkey, partners with Caffe Nero

Audible, like CreateSpace, began life independently of Amazon, and by the time Amazon acquired them both, these two savvy publishing ventures had carved niches that, for the longest while, Amazon was happy to leave alone. Everyone was happy. But Audible, an ambitious, globally-minded operation, soon found that its international aspirations were beholden to Amazon’s roadmap. Read More …

Discount ebook deals mailing list BookBub finally adds audiobooks. Launches Chirp in partnership with Findaway

One of the biggest gripes about Amazon’s ACX, the self-publishing arm of Audible and very much the go to place for indie authors to distribute their audiobooks, is that Amazon calls the shots on pricing. Among the many appeals of new kid on the block Findaway is that the author has a semblance of control. Read More …

Storytel prepares Germany launch, consolidating subscription as a serious challenger to the traditional publishing model

It all seemed so implausible at the start of this decade. Ebooks had officially arrived, thanks to Amazon’s Kindle store breathing life into a format that had been around since long before. But it was just a digital extension of the status quo retail model. It was printed books on a screen, not remotely exploring digital’s Read More …

Brazil’s Ubook prepares IPO as Amazon launches Audible Latino, suggesting Audible Spain is still some way off

Brazilian audiobook firm Ubook is preparing for an IPO in Canada that will value the company at anywhere from USD $8 – $15 million as CEO Flavio Osso looks to expand Ubook’s operations further into Europe. UPDATE: Flavio Osso points out that “The range from 8 to 15 million dollars is the the target amount Read More …

Amazon’s Audible says self-published ebooks and paperbacks are not evidence that an author has been published

With the announcement in December that Amazon-owned Audible was sponsoring the prestigious Sunday Times Short Story Award came the prospect that the winners would not just earn some extra cash but would have their entries published as an audiobook that would reach a still wider audience. Which all sounds great. The Sunday Times Short Story Read More …

Italy’s Traduzione Libri becomes the latest casualty of Amazon’s CreateSpace shutdown. The hunt for a serious international POD operator is on

Ever since the first hints were dropped that CreateSpace was not long for this world and indie authors would be shunted into KDP Print there has been a question mark over publishing books in foreign languages. While Amazon may seem to be a global player, actually it is no such thing, and much of its Read More …

Storytel launches in 14th market – Mexico – with 2,400 Spanish titles accessible across Latin America

Storytel’s Mexico launch today comes with a surprise bonus. Full Latin America reach. When TNPS broke the news in the Anglophone industry media that Storytel was looking at the Latin America markets I noted Brazil, Argentina, Colombia and Mexico were frontrunners for Storytel’s LatAm expansion. Storytel’s Latin American ambitions. Brazil, Mexico, Argentina and Colombia for Read More …

Amazon finally launches Audible in India, almost a year after Storytel. Sticks to one audiobook subscription model against Storytel’s unlimited ebooks and audio

Impossible to second-guess why this took so long – the expectation was early 2018 – but Amazon has finally launched a beta version of Audible in India, and it has stuck to its standard model despite an almost year long head start by rival Storytel. Sweden’s Storytel beats Amazon’s Audible to the India audiobook market Read More …

Nextory partners with Libreka to prepare a Germany launch, competing with BookBeat and Amazon. Storytel prefers the low-hanging fruit

This is Storytel’s global reach as we start October 2018: Sweden, Norway, Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Netherlands, Poland, Russia, Spain, India, United Arab Emirates, Turkey and Italy, with imminent launches in Bulgaria and Mexico, and a Brazil launch unconfirmed but looking likely. With the exception of Italy, none are countries where Amazon’s Audible is an active Read More …

The Week In Review

Here’s a summary of TNPS posts from the past seven days. UK’s Bradford Lit Fest and USA’s Washington National Book Fest see record attendance Sharjah Publishing City sponsors Nigerian literature award Ireland: “A buoyant time for publishing.  One of today’s most vibrant book markets.” Sweden-based Arabic-language audiobook firm Kitab Sawti attracts new investment Peru exempts Read More …

As Storytel’s 2019 Asia expansion steps up with a Thailand office, TNPS speculates where next for Storytel

Not content with its Latin America ambitions, with a Mexico launch set for December, and a Brazil launch looking likely in the New Year, Storytel has announced the next stage of its Asia expansion is underway. To start with it’s an office in Bangkok, which will be used to coordinate expansion across the continent as Read More …

Bonnier’s Bookbeat clocks 100,000 subscribers as growth continues, but UK publishers still aren’t interested

A month ahead of schedule, Bookbeat, the audiobook and ebook subscription arm of the Swedish publishing giant Bonnier, has reached its milestone of 100,000 subscribers, reports Boktugg’s Sölve Dahlgren., who says the company is on target to to reach SEK 150 million ($17 million) in revenue for the full year 2018. Bookbeat CEO Niclas Sandin Read More …

Audible UK’s £150,000 deal with LAMDA means British publishers need to up their audiobook game

The Bookseller breaks the news today that Amazon’s Audible UK has partnered with the London Academy of Music and Dramatic Arts (LAMDA) in a three year deal worth £150,000 ($195,000). Explains The Bookseller, The two organisations will develop the next generation of acting talent through scholarships and training opportunities in audio entertainment, while original audio Read More …