One of the only companies with enough market presence to pull off self-publishing in India is Amazon. The Seattle company is poised to do big business in India in the coming years, primarily due to FlipKart abandoning the e-book space and giving all of their customers away to Kobo.
Neal Thompson is Amazon’s director for author and publishing relations. In a recent interview he stated “On our bookstore site in India, we have three million digital titles now. We don’t disclose how many of them are self-published, but let me assure you, that’s a pretty solid number.”
He went on to say “Also, we have a best-sellers list on Amazon that changes hourly. At any given time, 20 of the top 100 in India are self-published titles. This shows the future potential in India, where we entered only about a year ago. In other countries where KDP has been around for slightly longer, we see those numbers even higher. So, 33% of the top 100 books in the US are self-published, and in Germany, I think it is 50%.”
“India is a country that has a deep culture of story-telling. It is also a country where literacy is on the rise. I think India is a huge and promising market for us, so we now have offices across the country to tap the potential.”
The one thing that makes self-publishing viable in India is the price. The larger publishing companies often charge between Rs. 210 to Rs. 411, whereas indie books often sell for or Rs.99 or less.
“Our e-books business is growing over 200% year-on-year, and e-books are quickly becoming a large part of our book business in India,” said Sanjeev Jha, director of Kindle content at Amazon.
Michael Kozlowski is the Editor in Chief of Good e-Reader. He has been writing about audiobooks and e-readers for the past ten years. His articles have been picked up by major and local news sources and websites such as the CBC, CNET, Engadget, Huffington Post and the New York Times.