Easons Will NOT Be Building A Platform For Ebooks Anytime Soon

Waterstones decided to team up with Amazon and one of most compelling reasons for that was the sheer cost of developing an ereader and a fully fledged ebook platform (just look at B&N’s capital expenditure and increased costs and their need for cash to support their successful Nook business, hence their deal with Microsoft). Which is why reading the paragraphs below make so little sense:

Ireland’s largest book retailer, Easons, revealed plans yesterday to enter the market as well. “We are not getting into bed with Amazon, that is for certain,” a spokesman said.

“But as part of a €20m plan to modernise our entire chain, we will be providing live wi-fi in our stores from this summer and dedicated e-book areas which will permit customers to download e-books from our website. The next phase of this process is to launch our own Easons branded e-reader.”

Rival

This means that the Irish market leader will follow in the steps of the US market leader, Barnes and Noble, which has already developed its own digital reading device to rival the Amazon one.

via Hodges Figgis and Easons to sell rival e-books – Irish, Business – Independent.ie.

If B&N struggled to build a platform and needed $300 million and a Microsoft partnership, and Waterstones joined forces with Amazon, some portion of a €20 million modernisation fund simply wont be enough to do it for Easons, even given a smaller market.

Unless
That is unless the spokesperson simply meant that Easons would use a white label ebook reader with an Eason logo on the outside. That wouldn’t be the worst idea ever, but it certainly does not mean Easons will be following in B&N’s steps!

As Philip Jones, deputy editor of The Bookseller, commented on Twitter:

A nice, nice day here in Dublin,
Eoin 

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4 comments

  1. I would suggest that it is self evident that Easons mean what they say .. a “branded” reader of some kind.
    B&N ‘may’ have needed $300M to build a completely new eReader, though I seriously doubt the accuracy of these numbers, but that is a completely different matter to what Eason is considering doing.

    1. To be fair the $300M is the figure for Microsoft’s investment in NewCo the business that Nook has been spun out of B&N into. As for their actual spending just check their statements and their own utterances, the implications are a considerable amount. Especially given the ’300-person operation’ in Palo Alto mentioned herein:

      http://www.nytimes.com/2012/01/29/business/barnes-noble-taking-on-amazon-in-the-fight-of-its-life.html?pagewanted=all

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