Smashwords has just closed a new distribution deal that will allow their self-published authors to sell their e-books in the Odilo, Tolino and Yuzu digital bookstores in early 2016.
Here are details for each the three agreements:
Odilo is a leading ebook supplier to over 2,100 public libraries in 43 countries across Europe (1,000 libraries), Latin America (1,000 libraries) and North America (100 libraries).
In October, they announced a deal with the ministry of culture in Spain to provide ebook services to over 15 million library card holders in Spain. The company is also running preliminary pilots to expand into Australia and New Zealand. About 40% of Odilo’s ebook sales are books in English, 40% Spanish, 15% French and 5% German.
Odilo’s Smashwords catalog will exclude erotica. With the addition of over 200,000 titles from Smashwords, Odilo’s offering to public libraries will grow to over one million titles. Smashwords authors and publishers will earn 45% list from Odilo sales, the same as from Smashwords library aggregators OverDrive and Baker & Taylor Axis 360.
The Odilo announcement follows Smashwords’ announcement of a library distribution relationship with Gardners’ Askews & Holts library service in October. Similar to Gardners, but unlike OverDrive, Odilo will support FREE as a price at which libraries can acquire certain Smashwords books.
Tolino estimates sales across its network accounted for approximately 37% of the German ebook market for the first quarter of 2015 with other major players in the market being Amazon and iBooks.
Tolino markets its own dedicated Tolino-branded e-reading device through the brick and mortar stores of its retail partners, which tether the retailer’s ebook store to the device. Approximately 30% of Tolino’s sales are made through these dedicated e-readers, with the remainder of purchases and reading occurring on the retailer’s custom apps.
Yuzu is the digital education platform and retailer operated by Barnes & Noble College, which operates 743 college bookstores serving 5 million college students and faculty members.
The agreement will make it easier for a wide range of Smashwords Premium Catalog books to be assigned for classroom use by educators. Students can also purchase Smashwords titles for their own enjoyment outside of the classroom in the Yuzu eBook store.
I think that the Odilo and Tolino deal makes sense for Smashwords authors, it opens up new markets that were previously unavailable. I highly doubt that Yuzu will be a viable distribution option because the Smashwords catalog is primarily fiction titles and students already deal directly with their favorite online store or their local library.
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 CNET, Engadget, Huffington Post and Verge.