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Kiwi booksellers band together to take on Amazon

“This is a way of ensuring the survival of the independent bookseller in New Zealand,” Time Out bookstore manager, Jenna Todd said.

STUFF News of 22 October 2023

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BookHub, the new site by New Zealand booksellers, seeks to gain an upper hand on the e-commerce giant, Amazon.

The new online platform brings together some 1 million unique titles across New Zealand.

It is a uniquely Kiwi approach to business, especially as the website has a randomised algorithm – whichever store it throws up first, gets the sale (unless you have turned the geolocation on). Consistent with the booksellers’ anti-Amazon model, this circular model is unique and runs off a “you get this one, I’ll get the next” approach.

According to Tony Moores, spokesperson for BookHub, a Booksellers Aotearoa board member and owner of Poppies bookstores, the indie stores are in with a fighting chance.

With the now-defunct Book Depository out of action, and the likes of Fishpond having anxious wait weeks for New Zealanders for their titles to arrive, BookHub’s appeal is not only in helping small business – but the simple matter of having books arrive in days, not weeks or months.

“You buy from an inventory which is already here, and has already been paid for … there’s a much shorter delivery window time, as the books can arrive to most locations and most destinations in 2 to 3 days.”

BookHub is up and running now. Photo from Stuff article – Lawrence Smith

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