In what we feel is brilliant timing, Ingram (Lightning Source) have gone live with their shiny new POD facility in Melbourne, Australia, which signals a new boom for ebooks in Australia for British publishers. What on earth has POD got to do with ebooks though?
Despite our (correct) obsession with all things 'e' at the moment, it's important to remember that all independents are publishers first, and ebook publishers second. The opening of the new facility in Australia simply means that proper expansion in Australia is a viable option. It means we can push forward on all fronts - and that includes ebooks.
It will begin with us launching an Australian website but shortly after that it will be a big focus on all things Australian. Not buying in the Fosters, cork hats and underachieving cricketers (sorry lads) but focussing on social media and other elements. We already have some Twitter accounts dedicated to the Aussies and are working on our Facebook strategy and some local distribution partners and resellers too. Maybe even the recruitment of some Australian authors - well, after all, since we launched our website in the USA half a dozen new authors have come in via that route.
Also excellent timing is the launch of the iTunes Australian store (their 6th) which went live a few weeks ago – little tip there, you need to add the information like pricing or your books won’t show. Very little communication (none?) from Apple that it was live so you may have missed it.Kobo of course have been live there for some time so we have had a few orders trickle through.
First impressions of the Ingram setup? Well, the order interface is pretty good. We’ve sent our first main test orders through and the process this end looks very similar. Access is through the UK account and not separate like the USA account – a definite improvement. We’ll come back to you shortly with feedback on delivery speed and quality, but for now it’s a big hurrah! and the start of big things down-under.