I’ve been especially busy so far this year planning and executing on an audacious e-book initiative. The problem is, three companies control 95 percent of the e-book business. We thought we’d see if we couldn’t do something about that. Hummingbird Digital Media is the result. We believe we are the first to bring this idea to the world. Here’s our first news release.
Start-up to Democratize E-book Retailing
California company plans to unleash the power of the many when it comes to selling e-books.
Sanger, CA, Friday, August 14, 2015 —Imagine a world where e-book sales were not dominated by three huge companies. Imagine a world where thousands of individuals and organizations could compete with Apple’s iBooks, Amazon’s Kindle, and Barnes and Noble’s Nook.
That’s just the world the people at Hummingbird Digital Media envision.
“What we’ve developed is a program where anyone and everyone can get into the e-book and audiobook business with a few mouse clicks,” says Stephen Blake Mettee, Hummingbird Digital Media’s president and chief visionary officer. “We like to say we are unleashing the power of the many.”
Hummingbird Digital Media, a subsidiary of American West Books, will supply organizations and individuals, including independent bookstores, nonprofits, print and online media, book publishers, professional associations, chain retailers, conferences, book clubs, speakers, bloggers and authors themselves, with a turnkey program that allows them to offer their clients and customers a huge catalog of the most popular e-books and audio books.
According to Mettee, the HDM platform will be entering the beta testing phase within weeks and launch in the fall. Anyone interested in joining the Hummingbird Digital Media merchant network may register at HummingbirdDM.com. There is no charge to become a merchant.
The program includes a feature-robust app for reading and listening, along with an intuitive web-based storefront for the discovery, purchasing, and downloading of digital media. The app is operating-system agnostic, meaning it works on iPhone, iPad, Android devices such as Nook and Samsung, and the Kindle Fire. Both the app and the storefront carry the brand identity of the organization or individual. Hummingbird Digital Media remains in the background, out of sight.
The e-book and audiobook catalog will consist of hundreds of thousands of titles sourced from thousands of publishers including Workman, Sourcebooks, Macmillan and HarperCollins just to name a few.
“We may be overly confident,” Mettee says, “but, with thousands more merchants selling e-books, we think there is a chance this program will kick-start a new growth in e-book sales.”
Founded in 1993, American West Books, Hummingbird Digital Media’s parent, is a major, international supplier to Costco, Sam’s Club, Whole Foods, and other retailers.