Axiell Media cries foul on OverDrive’s Sweden deal, claiming OverDrive has no agreements with Sweden’s biggest publishers

October was supposed to mark the start of OverDrive’s supply of digital content to Sweden’s public libraries after Overdrive beat domestic front-runner Axial in a lowest-priced bidding war. From TNPS in June: OverDrive wins 4 year contract to supply ebooks to Sweden’s libraries Axiell bought out former market leader Elib in 2015 and seemed in Read More …

Toronto library first in world to exceed 20 million digital downloads

Twenty million. That’s how many ebooks and audiobooks have been downloaded from the Toronto Public Library as of July 31. InfoDocket reports the Toronto Library kicked off its digital adventure in 2007, the same year the Kindle store launched in the USA, with just 25 ebooks. Last month it became the first library anywhere in Read More …

66 OverDrive libraries on target for 1 million+ downloads in 2018. Seven for 4m. Two looking at 5m as downloads soar 11%

The mid-year numbers are in from OverDrive and once again it’s looking to be a record-breaking year for the Rakuten-owned company. Last year OverDrive recorded 225 million downloads, with 58 libraries passing the 1 million downloads mark. This year at the half-way mark 66 libraries are looking to exceed 1 million downloads, with seven libraries Read More …

OverDrive clocks 220,000 audiobook downloads a day. On target for 80 million audio downloads this year that won’t be counted by Data Guy’s BookStat

OverDrive launched its new quarterly Perspectives on Reading e-magazine this week, and among its “unique insights” was an article on audiobook growth from OverDrive’s own data. Back in 2013 OverDrive crossed the 100 million downloads benchmark, reporting 79 million ebook checkouts and 22.9 million for audiobooks. For 2017 OverDrive clocked 225 million downloads, comprising 155 Read More …

OverDrive wins 4 year contract to supply ebooks to Sweden’s libraries

News is breaking in Sweden that America’s OverDrive has out-tendered domestic rival Axiell to become the primary ebook distributor for Sweden’s public libraries. Axiell bought out former market leader Elib in 2015 and seemed in an unbeatable position, but didn’t reckon on Rakuten’s growing hunger for the international ebook markets, which offered a “significantly cheaper” Read More …

Audio Publishers Association says 2017 US audiobook market worth $2.5 billion – more than double Data Guy’s BookStat valuation. Who are we to believe?

When the Audio Publishers Association issued its latest valuation of the US audiobook market last week the $2.5 billion figure understandably made the headlines. We can’t say for certain how accurate that figure may be, as it is, in the words of What’s New In Publishing, the result of the annual US sales survey (conducted Read More …

OverDrive’s Libby app use growing at 30% per month but digital library downloads continue to be ignored by the data gurus

Given Libby was Google Play’s ‘Best New App of the Year’ in 2017 and won #1 Apple App Store rating for books and library in May of 2018, it should come as no surprise that the OverDrive app for digital library access is doing well. In 2017 OverDrive clocked some 225 million ebook and audiobook Read More …

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 …

Ebooks grow, slowly, in France

The 4th KPMG Book Barometer is out, and offers a picture of gradual ebook development, with little indication the future will bring any emulation of the exponential growth we saw in the key Anglophone markets, the USA and UK. Seven out of ten publishers in France now offer digital, and 80% of new releases have a Read More …

Self-publishing news round-up 21 October 2017

Smart Author Podcasts from Smashwords Being exclusive or “going wide” Amazon acts as judge, jury and executioner Author-signings and ebooks Making end-matter maintenance easier StreetLib-OverDrive Christmas promotion Six stories from the self-publishing circuit this week. Smart Author Podcasts from Smashwords Does the world need yet another podcast on self publishing?  Mark Coker at the indie-oriented Read More …

OverDrive leads the way with dyslexia-friendly ebooks

What do WB Yeates, Sherrilyn Kenyon, Lynda La Plante, Jules Verne, F. Scott Fitzgerald and Agatha Christie have in common? They all endured some form of what we now call “learning disabilities,” chief among them likely dyslexia, which although first recognised in the late 1890s did not become widely accepted as a learning difficulty until Read More …