Friday, August 15, 2008

Amazon buys AbeBooks

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Some of you who hate to pay 20 or 30 dollars for a book, have discovered the charm of haunting used book stores to find the novel or information you are seeking. The computer savvy among you no doubt have discovered on-line purchasing of used books. This gives you access to thousands of used book stores from around the world.

The big player in this market is AbeBooks.com, with 13,000 dealers who have over 100 million books for sale through Abe (Advanced Book Exchange).

I've bought and sold many books through Abe and its competitors, Alibris.com, Biblio.com and of course, Amazon.com. I've never been disappointed.

But ownership of the used book market is becoming far more concentrated, the Bookseller reports:


Amazon is buying rare and out of print books specialist AbeBooks for an undisclosed sum. The takeover, which is subject to regulatory approvals, is expected to be completed during the fourth quarter of 2008.

AbeBooks' website has been trading since 1996 and has 13,500 bookseller members, who pay a monthly subscription fee to list their books. The website features more than 110 million used, rare and out of print books for sale from thousands of indies across the world. . . .

The takeover is the third major acquisition Amazon has made this year. It took over digital book download site Audible for $300m in March and also bought online fabric store Fabric.com in June.AbeBooks will continue to maintain all of its websites as part of the takeover.

Here's a tip for you. Abe Books also owns a search service called Bookfinder.com. Bookfinder searches all of the the major used book marketing websites and ensures that you can get the lowest price possible on your purchase.
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