Amazon INC and book publisher Penguin Group reached an agreement regarding the pricing of Penguin’s electronic books, the online retailer and book publisher said Wednesday.
The Seattle, Washington-based Amazon and Penguin, which is owned by media group Pearson PLC of Britain, have been locked in a bitter dispute over digital book prices which saw Penguin stop supplying Amazon with new titles last month, much to the chagrin of Kindle owners wanting to buy best sellers.
“We have an agreement with Penguin and will soon be offering their complete selection of digital books to Kindle customers,” an Amazon spokeswoman said in a statement. Although core details are not available at this time, in terms of new E-Book Pricing.
Penguin stopped selling new e-books in April to Amazon, a move which affected about 150 titles. At the time, Amazon then responded by pricing various Penguin hardcover books at a low $9.99. Publishers complained about the effect of the low price on the mindset of book consumers. Companies were concerned that they would be forced to lower their wholesale prices as a result. In January, Amazon removed Macmillan books from its website after the latter attempted to set higher prices for the e-books than the $9.99 price set by Amazon.
Publishers in general have been trying to institute what’s called an “agency model” for e-books, in which the publisher sets the price and the seller, such as Amazon, must sell at that price in exchange for a cut. Apple has agreed to agency model selling for its iBooks program for the iPad tablet. In general, publishers want to charge $12.99 and up for popular books, while Amazon wants to charge $9.99 in order to drive Kindle sales.
In a twist of fate even though Apple Pays publishers more money, around 70%, although books are still more expensive via the iBookstore and many people are quite comfortable buying from Amazon. Although, Amazon makes quite a lucrative business by undercutting the competition.
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.