Findaway was already the biggest player in the audiobooks aggregator arena in September, but this month it has consolidated its position with no less than nine new partnerships announced.
Findaway began October with an announcement that BajaLibros, Fuuze, Leamos and Bidi were being added to the partner list.
Now it winds down October with five additional partners, taking its total partner list to more than 40, with AudiobooksNow, Axiell, Bokus Play, Bookbeat and Bookmate being added. The new partners will become effective within ninety days.
The Findaway Voices blog tells us more about the new partners.
Recipient of the Publishing for Digital Minds Innovation Award at the London Book Fair in 2014, Bookmate is a retail subscription service with over 6 million users, making them the largest ebook and audiobook subscription service in Eastern Europe. Bookmate also has a social networking element that allows subscribers to post and share within the app, as well as create themed ‘bookshelves’ to collect titles they’ve read and share thoughts on each book.
Backed by the UK publisher Bonnier Books, BookBeat has become the second-largest audiobook distributor in Scandinavia. They operate in Europe and currently have localized platforms that target users in Sweden, Finland, UK, and Germany, with more expansion planned. They already have over 250,000 paying customers, and that number will only grow as Europe’s audiobook demand increases. Based in Stockholm, BookBeat provides listeners with unlimited audiobooks for a single monthly fee of about $13. That’s a huge existing customer base that your audiobook is about to tap into!
Axiell is library partner that has exclusive digital audiobook contracts for public libraries in both Sweden and Finland, and they’ve also partnered with big institutions such as The Carnegie Museum of Natural History and The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame (which isn’t far from Findaway HQ). Having done great things for libraries, they’re now also expanding into retail with a new brand: Bokus Play (up next).
Bokus Play is a subscription service where its Scandinavian members pay 79 SEK/month (about $8 USD) for discounted a-la-carte purchases. It’s like paying for a wholesale club membership to get access to great deals. Bokus Play is a new brand in the audiobook industry, but their parent company, Axiell (mentioned above), is a seasoned pro. Bokus Play will offer a great marketplace for your audiobooks, and we are thrilled to launch with them.
Developed by BookLender, the world’s leading e-book and audiobook rental service, AudiobooksNow wants to cause ripples in the audiobook market. Located in Baltimore, AudiobooksNow is focused on North America. They also provide a “Club Pricing Plan” ($4.99/month) where members pay for discounted a-la-carte purchases!
While it would be totally wrong to see the current surge in the audiobook markets as being at the expense of ebooks (ebooks are actually doing far better than you might think, reading some reports), there’s no question audiobooks are making strong headway globally, and Findaway is leading the charge in making these global outlets accessible.
But perhaps most exciting is not that Findaway has so many audiobook partners (hands up those who thought Audible, Apple and Google Play were the only shows in town?) but that there are so many more still to connect with, and so much more reach to come from existing partners.
Storytel, for example, is set to launch in South Korea before the year’s end.
Bookbeat has promised three new launches by year’s end, and while it hasn’t confirmed what they are my guess is Italy, Netherlands and Spain. Bookbeat plans to be in 28 territories soon, but no timetable for that.
Meanwhile Brazil’s Ubook is set for an IPO that will see it expand globally.
Poland’s Audioteka has further expansion on the cards and like Ubook, Poland’s Legimi is set for an IPO before year’s end.
There are several other major global audiobook announcements looming that I can’t detail at this time, but be in no doubt audiobooks are making waves globally, not just in the USA.