The big question is what Shadi Bitar will do next, and if he will be willing to step outside the comfort zone of Storytel’s shadow and break meaningful new ground.
With 200,000 audiobook and ebook titles in Dutch and English (no indication as to how many are in the native language), Nextory today confirmed its launch into its 7th market, the Netherlands.
No surprises here, but it should be noted Nextory faces an uphill struggle to compete with its Swedish rival Storytel, which has been in the Netherlands since 2013.
Nextory CEO Shadi Bitar offered a typically upbeat but detail-deficient statement such as has become the trademark of Nextory press releases:
We are incredibly happy and proud that we are now live in the Netherlands. The launch has been brilliant and many Dutch readers have already started subscriptions. We are convinced that our great passion for books will spread to the Netherlands and we are very much looking forward to increasing reading and enriching the lives of the Dutch with fantastic stories.
But as we’ve seen twice this year, Bitar is happy to share the real numbers with potential investors, and has brought in a total of $26 million this year to pursue global expansion, the most recent being a $20 million cash injection last month.
The big question is what Shadi Bitar will do next, and if he will be willing to step outside the comfort zone of Storytel’s shadow and break meaningful new ground (the Nextory launches in Austria and Switzerland, while not Storytel markets, just leveraged existing content for the German market). Time will tell.