Los Gatos, Calif. and Toronto, ON — November 16, 2009 — Shortcovers by Indigo Books & Music, Inc. (TSX:IDG), a leading global eBook service, and Smashwords, a global publisher and distributor of independently published eBooks, today announced a content distribution partnership that promises to democratize eBook publishing for authors and small independent presses around the world.
Effective November 18, Smashwords will begin supplying eBooks to Shortcovers, drawing upon Smashwords’ rapidly expanding catalog of nearly 5,000 original eBooks from 2,300 self-published authors and small publishers. Smashwords’ authors and publishers come from over 20 countries.
Shortcovers operates a mobile and web-based eReading service with almost a million downloads across 189 countries. Shortcovers offers eReading applications for the iPhone™, BlackBerry®, Palm® Pre™ and Google Android™ smartphones. The company also supports Adobe EPUB downloads which enables Shortcovers to offer eBooks on popular eReaders like the Sony Reader.
Since launch in February 2009, Shortcovers has shown a strong commitment to connecting readers with new and innovative voices.
“Our partnership with Smashwords represents a great opportunity for authors, publishers and readers alike,” said Michael Tamblyn, vice president of content, sales and merchandising at Shortcovers. “Both Shortcovers and Smashwords are committed to a more open, democratic, and innovative eBook experience. Our open platform allows readers to read on the device of their choice while Smashwords creates new opportunities for writers, utilizing free online publishing tools and community to connect with new audiences in new ways. ”
“This agreement dramatically expands the worldwide market for all independent authors and publishers,” said Mark Coker, founder of Smashwords. “A Smashwords author in the U.K. or Brazil can upload their book today and have it purchased by a Shortcovers customer next week in the United States, India, or South Africa. Under the Smashwords model of instant publishing, any author, anywhere in the world, can go from finished manuscript to worldwide eBook distribution in a matter of minutes or days.”
Smashwords’ authors and publishers will earn royalties of 46.75 percent of the digital list price of their book sales on Shortcovers, nearly tens times the royalty rate most traditionally published print authors earn on mass market paperbacks, and about four times higher than royalties on hardcover books.
To distribute via Smashwords, authors and publishers simply upload their finished manuscript as a Microsoft Word document, formatted per the requirements of the Smashwords Style Guide. To learn more about publishing via Smashwords, visit http://www.smashwords.com/about/how_to_publish_on_smashwords.
For more information or to download Shortcovers, visit http://www.shortcovers.com.
Shortcovers is a new eBook service developed by Indigo Books & Music Inc. Shortcovers allows consumers to find their next great read, sample and purchase for immediate download on any mobile device. The service will provide instant access to the newest ebooks, hottest authors and most popular newspapers and magazines. Shortcovers is for consumers who want the convenience of accessing and reading their favorite content, anytime, anywhere, on any mobile device. For more information, please visit www.shortcovers.com.
Shortcovers is available on a wide variety of consumer devices including the iPhone, Palm Pre, Blackberry and Google Android devices. Check out www.shortcovers.com/mobile for download information. The Shortcovers iPhone application is available for free download in the iTunes App Stores worldwide. The Shortcovers Blackberry application is available for free download in the Blackberry AppWorld. The Shortcovers Palm Pre application is available in the Palm Pre App Catalog. The Shortcovers Android application is available in the Android Marketplace. Shortcovers will be expanding their mobile application portfolio to include applications for other smartphones, netbooks and eReaders.
About Indigo Books & Music Inc.
Indigo Books & Music Inc. (TSX:IDG) is a publicly traded Canadian company and the largest book retailer in Canada, operating bookstores in all provinces under the names Indigo, Chapters, The World’s Biggest Bookstore and Coles. Indigo operates www.chapters.indigo.ca, an online retailer of books, music, DVDs and toys. To learn more about Indigo, please visit the About Our Company section of www.chapters.indigo.ca.
About Smashwords, Inc.
Launched in 2008, Smashwords operates an ebook publishing and distribution platform serving authors, publishers and readers. Smashwords makes it free and easy for any author or publisher, anywhere in the world, to instantly publish and distribute a multi-format ebook. Smashwords puts authors and publishers in full control over the pricing, sampling and distribution of their works. Authors and publishers receive up to 85 percent of the net proceeds from sales of their works. Smashwords books are distributed via leading online retailers such as Shortcovers, Sony and Barnes & Noble, and via leading mobile e-reading apps such as Shortcovers, Stanza, Ereader, Aldiko and Word Player, spanning all major mobile platforms including Android and iPhone. Smashwords is based in Los Gatos, California, and can be reached on the web at http://www.smashwords.com/ Visit the official Smashwords blog at http://blog.smashwords.com/. For frequent Smashwords updates, follow Smashwords’ founder, Mark Coker, on Twitter at http://twitter.com/markcoker