GoodeReader reported last month on the startup of a new ebook seller, Zola. What made Zola’s business model so interesting at the time was its plan to sell content that other platforms weren’t selling in digital form, such as its first time, Audrey Niffenegger’s The Time Traveler’s Wife. According to a post by Jeremy Greenfield for Digital Book World, Zola’s launch has been pushed back from its originally planned October 10th start date due to the already apparent need for more powerful servers, the platform is moving forward with its plan to sign up independent bookstores in order to help them sell ebooks to their customers.
Originally having the option of participating in a Google initiative through the American Booksellers Association, indie bookstores have been struggling to stay afloat in the era of e-reading. Zola, as well as digital platform powerhouse Kobo, have been working on programs to allow smaller, independently owned bookstores to sell ebooks to their customers and still earn a profit on the titles. To date, Zola and Kobo have over one hundred and over three hundred bookstore customers, respectively.
While Kobo is also enabling its partner bookstores to sell Kobo e-reader devices, Zola is working on integrating its services into existing HTML5 enabled devices and an iPad app. While waiting for its formal launch, Zola is developing two new titles that are not available from other platforms, Making Mavericks by Frosty Hesson and Ian Spiegelman (Skyhorse Publishing) and The Chemickal Marriage by Gordon Dahlquist (Penguin).