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( Victoria, BC - April 29, 2005) Online bookseller will celebrate its 9 th birthday next week with an extended family including millions of book-buyers and 13,000 booksellers in 48 countries, who list over 70 million books for sale on the AbeBooks sites.

Launched in May 1996, AbeBooks is the world’s largest online marketplace for new, used, rare, and out-of-print books. Next week, it will profile the 126 booksellers who have sold through since day one. These ‘Heritage Sellers’ stretch across North America and also include booksellers from Hereford in the UK, Canberra in Australia and Christchurch in New Zealand.

Based in Victoria on Vancouver Island, the privately owned firm has become an international business with offices in Germany and Spain. It offers dedicated websites for the UK, Germany, and France, and, in October 2004, Spanish rare bookseller was purchased and added to the platform. There is also a micro-site dedicated to Australia and New Zealand.

In 1996, the company had three employees, the founders, and it now employs 102 staff (83 in Victoria and 19 in Europe). has enjoyed an annual compound growth rate of 198 per cent since 1996.

"Nine years is a long time in Internet retailing,” said Hannes Blum, president and CEO of “We are extremely grateful to everyone who has helped us get this far, including millions of book-buyers, thousands of book-sellers and our employees. We are very excited about what the future holds for us."

AbeBooks began selling new books in June 2004 and it has become a key area of growth. Textbooks are also vital with sales in the last back-to-school season increasing by 400 per cent from 12 months earlier.

  • AbeBooks facilitates more than 20,000 book sales each day
  • More than 200,000 fresh books are loaded onto AbeBooks sites daily
  • Customers perform nearly 2 million book searches on the AbeBooks websites each day
  • The value of books sold in 2004 on AbeBooks was over $130 million US (annual gross merchandise volume). was named one of the top e-business sites by the United Nations at the World Summit Awards in Geneva, 2003.

The media have written recently:

  • "Is the next Amazonian behemoth?" –, 4/14/05
  • "2004 was a real page turner for" – Internet, 2/2/05
  • "AbeBooks has changed my life" – author Alain de Botton, The Independent ( London), 1/15/05


About AbeBooks
AbeBooks is the world's largest online marketplace for books, with over 70 million new, second-hand, rare, and out-of-print titles listed for sale by more than 13,000 independent booksellers from around the world. AbeBooks has millions of registered customers who collectively purchase more than 20,000 books a day from its 5 global websites (,,, and A true internet success story, has been selling books online since 1996, and is a private company based in Victoria, BC Canada, with offices in Düsseldorf, Germany.

Richard Davies, PR & Publicity Mgr.,
Ph: 250-412-3238

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Richard Davies
PR & Publicity Manager
(Media inquiries only. For general questions please contact Customer Support.)

#4 - 410 Garbally Rd.
Victoria, BC
V8T 2K1