Tucked away in the heart of Italy, the Mediterranean to the west, the Adriatic to the east, Venice to the north, Rome to the south, lies Florence, a city that has had key roles in the arts since before the Renaissance and right up to the modern day, with its central role in Dan Brown’s Inferno.
Little known outside Italy lies a Florentine bookstore, the Paperback Exchange, in the shadow of the Duomo, that sells English-language books to Italians.
In pre-digital days the English bookstore (every great city has one, and some are hugely successful) run by Emily Rosner and Maurizio Panichi proved immensely popular with Italians looking to stretch their English abilities with original English-language books, published as nature intended.
One might think that the arrival of ebooks would have dealt a mortal blow to such a venture, but while ebook stores like Amazon, Kobo, Apple and Google Play all offer a wide range of English-language titles in Italy, the Paperback Exchange in Florence has remained profitable throughout.
It is the founding couple’s pending retirement, not economic worries, that have them putting the bookstore up for sale this month, just short of its fortieth anniversary (2019).
The English-language Florence-focussed journal The Florentine, explains that Emily Rosner and Maurizio Panichi,
seek a special buyer filled with enthusiasm for books, community oriented and interested in setting up shop here in Florence, or if from abroad, relocating to this alluring city. They look forward to helping in the transition of this vibrant business into your hands.
The business is located on the ground floor of a beautiful, historic, well-maintained building in the very center of Florence—literally in the shadow of the Duomo.
The Paperback Exchange serves the large English-reading population in Florence and Tuscany, and importantly, most of the American universities present in central Italy. Through the robust tourism sector, it has become one of the most popular retail destinations of its kind.
Interested? For a prospectus and more information, please contact owners Emily and Maurizio at email@example.com
Via The Florentine.