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ABEBOOKS.COM’S ONLINE INVENTORY HITS 100 MILLION BOOKS
Frankfurt Bookfair – 4 October 2006) The world’s largest selection of books for sale now exceeds 100 million. When A Checklist of the Vertebrate Animals of Kansas by George D. Potts and Joseph T. Collins was uploaded on to AbeBooks.com on 21 September, it marked the first time the website’s inventory had ever reached the landmark figure of 100,000,000 books.
The 1991 first edition, offered for sale by Gene’s Books in Stafford, Kansas, was priced at $34.47 and is a typical example of the hard-to-find gems that can be easily found at AbeBooks.com – the world’s largest online marketplace for new, used, rare and out-of-print books. A seller with AbeBooks since 2000, Gene Medenwald, owner of Gene’s Books, had bought the book, which is signed and inscribed by George Potts, at an estate auction in Concordia, Kansas. AbeBooks purchased the book last week as a key item of company memorabilia.
The 100 million landmark was reached thanks to booksellers simply listing more books than ever. With thousands of booksellers using AbeBooks, the average seller has 7,400 listings – up from 6,500 in 2005. The book count topped a million after less than six months in business and 35 million by 2000. The database has grown by up to 17 million books a year for the past three years.
Many used, rare and antiquarian booksellers have drastically increased the percentage of their inventory offered over the Internet while higher numbers of college textbooks, professional reference books and popular bestsellers have also boosted the database size. An on-going program of site developments has ensured buyers are still able to easily locate books despite the ever-increasing number of listings.
Founded in June 1996, AbeBooks.com is celebrating the landmark by unveiling a new corporate logo and by announcing the books found at Iberlibro.com, a Spanish rare and used book online marketplace acquired in 2004, will be integrated into the AbeBooks.com database by the end of the year – instantly adding more than two million Spanish books. Since being acquired, Iberlibro.com has operated as a standalone website with its books listed in a separate database. Bibliophiles looking for books on Iberlibro.com will have access to the entire AbeBooks’ inventory.
AbeBooks will also launch an Italian website (www.abebooks.it) in the new year. More than 50 Italian booksellers, including Deastore, Firenzelibri and Libroco, already list over a million books on the site. AbeBooks already has dedicated websites for North America, UK, France, Germany and a micro-site for Australia and New Zealand, so the development of the Italian and Spanish markets illustrates the company’s commitment to international growth.
“The selection keeps growing and that attracts buyers because they know they’re going to find the book they want,” said Hannes Blum, CEO and president of AbeBooks.com. “We anticipate that our booksellers will list well in excess of 100 million in the years ahead. We remain committed to books and booksellers, and have no intention of moving into other areas. Our focus continues to be on expanding our selection around the globe. There is great potential in Italy and we’ve been targeting Spanish speakers for two years with Iberlibro, so Europe is a key area of growth.”