Macmillan Strikes Ebook Deal with Amazon

macmillan amazonMacmillan reached a multi-year distribution agreement with Amazon yesterday, making it the latest Big Five book publisher to return to agency ebook pricing.

In a letter to authors announcing the deal, Macmillan CEO John Sargent struck a noticeably different tone than did Hachette and Simon & Schuster when they broke word of their respective Amazon agreements earlier this year.

While both of those publishers explicitly professed their satisfaction with the terms they reached with the e-tailer, Sargent did not, instead taking pains to emphasize that “one of the big problems in the digital marketplace” remains unresolved: the scale of Amazon’s control over the ebook market.

According to Sargent, that’s the driving motivation for Macmillan’s decision to explore ebook subscription services on a limited basis in the coming weeks.

Much more.

Related: Publishers Size up Amazon as 2015 Nears | Kindle Head Russ Grandinetti to Speak Live at DBW15

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Oyster Adds Bloomsbury Ebooks (The Bookseller)
Bloomsbury becomes the latest publisher to partner with Oyster, making more than 1,000 of its ebooks available on Oyster’s subscription-based platform.
Related: Oyster’s Chief Revenue Officer Matt Shatz Joins DBW15

Debating KDP’s Ebook Pricing Model (Teleread)
Author and DBW15 speaker Rick Chapman takes Amazon to task for its Kindle Direct Publishing policy of collecting 65% of the revenue on titles priced beneath and above certain predetermined thresholds. Here’s Chapman’s case; here’s a circumspect take on it; and here and here are where you can hear more from Chapman on the issue.

iBooks Store Head to Join DBW15 (Pub Lunch)
Keith Moerer, Director of Apple’s iBooks Store, takes the main stage at Digital Book World 2015 for a discussion with Michael Cader of Publishers Lunch, for what will be the second conversation with a head of each of the two biggest ebook retailers in the world, after Cader sits down with Russ Grandinetti, SVP of Kindle.

Amazon Launches One-Hour Delivery in NYC (ZDNet)
Doubling down on its efforts to bring the immediacy of the physical retail world to online shoppers, Amazon launches a limited one-hour delivery service for Prime customers based in Manhattan.

Revenue up at Scholastic (PW)
Scholastic’s second quarter revenue rose 7% from the same period last year, driven by gains in its children’s publishing book and distribution category, where the company’s book club business saw sales rise 33%.
Related: Four Leaders at Scholastic to Speak Live at DBW15

Penguin Random House Continues Integration (PW)
Markus Dohle, CEO of Penguin Random House, reviews the past year’s progress in combining the two organizations after their merger, saying that undertaking remains on track heading into 2015.

Korean Ebook Platform Raises $8 Million (TechCrunch)
The South Korea-based ebook retailer Ridibooks closes an $8 million round of funding in a bid to edge out the top two bricks-and-mortar retailers in the country’s still small ebook market. Ridibooks sees the mobile boom as a factor in its favor.

What’s Next for Digital Audiobooks? (Good E Reader)
The digital audiobook market has seen a flurry of activity in recent months, from Nook’s reentry into audiobook streaming to Scribd’s adding audiobooks to its subscription platform. But to what extent are those indicators of the format’s future success? Good E Reader assesses where audiobooks stand in relation to the ebook market, with an eye on opportunities among libraries.


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