Feeds

Amazon swallows UK online bookseller

The Book Depository assimilated by a Borg depository

Maximizing your infrastructure through virtualization

The world of online book retailing is about to get that little bit less competitive, with Amazon announcing that it’s reached agreement to buy UK seller The Book Depository.

Perhaps recognizing the importance of the brand, the 900-pound gorilla has faithfully promised that it’s not going to squash The Book Depository brand. Customer disquiet has also led The Book Depository to reassure people that it will continue to operate independently.

That independence, users hope, will include maintaining its free delivery to 100 countries and its “long tail” approach of resurrecting out-of-print titles under its Dodo Press imprint.

However, with Amazon’s margins under pressure – the company has warned its margin could fall to below 3 percent of sales in the current quarter – it’s almost certain to bring a magnifying glass to anything in The Book Depository’s business model that looks like over-servicing its customers.

There’s no word yet on whether the UK’s the Office of Fair Trading is likely to raise any competition concerns.

That competition impact will stretch far beyond the US and UK. While data isn’t available for individual territories, Amazon and The Book Depository stand as practically the only international online bookseller brands of note in countries like Australia. In many countries, the merger will create an effective monopoly.

In the Australian market, administrators for collapsed private equity company REDgroup, which bought and gutted the Angus & Robertson and Borders retail chains before collapsing earlier this year, have sold the company’s online business to the Australian arm of Penguin’s owner Pearson.

When REDgroup sunk under the weight of excessive debt and a long program of customer alienation, pundits in Australia pointed the finger at Amazon and The Book Depository for eating the local retailer’s lunch. Under a single business, the twin international giants will present an even more formidable challenge to localized retailers. ®

Top three mobile application threats

More from The Register

next story
BBC goes offline in MASSIVE COCKUP: Stephen Fry partly muzzled
Auntie tight-lipped as major outage rolls on
iPad? More like iFAD: We reveal why Apple fell into IBM's arms
But never fear fanbois, you're still lapping up iPhones, Macs
Nadella: Apps must run on ALL WINDOWS – PCs, slabs and mobes
Phone egg, meet desktop chicken - your mother
White? Male? You work in tech? Let us guess ... Twitter? We KNEW it!
Grim diversity numbers dumped alongside Facebook earnings
Microsoft: We're making ONE TRUE WINDOWS to rule us all
Enterprise, Windows still power firm's shaky money-maker
HP, Microsoft prove it again: Big Business doesn't create jobs
SMEs get lip service - what they need is dinner at the Club
ITC: Seagate and LSI can infringe Realtek patents because Realtek isn't in the US
Land of the (get off scot) free, when it's a foreign owner
Dude, you're getting a Dell – with BITCOIN: IT giant slurps cryptocash
1. Buy PC with Bitcoin. 2. Mine more coins. 3. Goto step 1
There's NOTHING on TV in Europe – American video DOMINATES
Even France's mega subsidies don't stop US content onslaught
prev story

Whitepapers

Top three mobile application threats
Prevent sensitive data leakage over insecure channels or stolen mobile devices.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Top 8 considerations to enable and simplify mobility
In this whitepaper learn how to successfully add mobile capabilities simply and cost effectively.
Application security programs and practises
Follow a few strategies and your organization can gain the full benefits of open source and the cloud without compromising the security of your applications.
The Essential Guide to IT Transformation
ServiceNow discusses three IT transformations that can help CIO's automate IT services to transform IT and the enterprise.