It was just a few months ago (July to be specific) that we carried the news of the Cool-ER e-reader having bit the dust. Well, such was the time when the e-reader segment was in turmoil and for a while, even the strongest had seemed vulnerable. The news of Interead, the United Kingdom based company which branded and distributed the Cool-ER brand of E-Readers having filed for bankruptcy led many to believe that was the last they will ever get to hear of the e-reader anytime again. However, the latest e-reader news springs a surprise as now we get to hear the company is back. And how!
The marketing director of Cool-er, Phil Wood, was at the IFA in Berlin recently and this is how he explained the two primary factors that led to the company to drift into liquidation: “The two reasons why we sort of went a bit quiet are the UK banking system’s problems – which interfered with the cash flow – and there was a large US retailer that reneged on the second large order,” he revealed.
“What we lacked, as a British start-up, was the financial stability that Elonex has. The tie-in with their pedigree is one that’s a perfect match for Cool-er. It’s a natural fit to team up and to bring forward [our] marketing and the branding expertise, because what Elonex is missing is the brand recognition.”
This time, Interead has partnered up with the e-Book maker Elonex in its new venture and is all set to launch a slew of new e-readers in the coming year. Five new e-readers are waiting to be launched and will be henceforth known as Elonex Cool-er e-readers. And of course, the most interesting bit of news is that the e-readers will have color e-ink to boast of while the Cool-er multi-coloured styling will be retained, too.
“If you’re dedicated reader, you want e-ink. And, obviously, in the new year, colour e-ink is coming along.”
He further added: “The ethos of Cool-er was always that it’s an eBook reader for readers, designed by readers. And that’s where the Elonex firmware can be improved even further. It’s very solid, but we’re bringing it to a range, if you’re an occasional reader, that includes a 99 Euro colour screen.”
And Phil seems to be already making the right noises to ensure his company can start off right from where it had left. The brand gets instant recognition on the big scene once again. “It was all a bit of fun. To me it was like lifestyle marketing. Predominently, it’s females that read more, so we wanted to get a light, colourful e-reader out there that wasn’t staid and corporate-like. Who wants beige, and a keypad on the front?”
The segment itself has witnessed a lot change in between and continues to be in the midst of change. The biggest alteration is perhaps the introduction of the lighter, smaller and much improved third gen Kindle. Sure, the new Cool-ers will have their task cut out, though Phil insists they are ready for it.
“Everyone knows the Cool-er brand.” This is how he sums it up.