Amazon.com this morning announced a deal to buy The Book Depository online bookseller, based in the UK. Although the companies are nominally in the same business, they use decidedly different strategies. The Book Depository focuses more on the breadth of its selection, not concerning itself with shipping large volumes of individual titles.
“The Book Depository is the UK’s largest dedicated online bookseller, offering the largest range of titles in the world, available for dispatch within 48 hours,” the company explains on its website. “Founded in 2004 to make ‘All Books To All’ we focus on selling ‘less of more’ rather than ‘more of less’, differentiating ourselves from other retailers who increasingly focus on bestsellers.”
Financial terms weren’t disclosed. The Book Depository is telling its customers on Twitter that it will “continue to operate independently.”
The move continues the Seattle-based company’s pattern of buying companies that differ from itself, either culturally or in their business model. Past examples include online shoe specialist Zappos and daily deal site Woot.com, both of which have also continued as standalone sites.
“Customers in more than 100 countries enjoy The Book Depository’s vast selection, convenient delivery and free shipping,” said Greg Greeley, Amazon’s Vice President of European Retail, in the news release announcing the deal. “The Book Depository is very focused on serving its customers around the world, and we look forward to welcoming them to the Amazon family.”
And yes, in a mildly ironic twist, the deal was announced on July 4, Independence Day here in the United States.
More coverage at PaidContent.org.