Publishing Competitors Joining Forces*

Our two largest competitors are joining forces under a new brand. From what I can tell so far, it doesn’t look to be a merger so much as a strategic partnership. It’s hard to tell how this will prove advantageous to authors. When the press releases start hitting the waves, we may learn more about what motivated this move, but right now it is my guess that Amazon’s recent entry into the vertical may have helped. Interestingly enough, each publisher will still exist in its own right, and its own location, and continue to offer the same old stuff. So what, then, is newsworthy about this? That’s the big question. If nothing else, it may simply be another, co-branded website that appears on search engines, and helps authors make the best choice for their publishing needs. At Outskirts Press we’ve always been a big proponent of educating authors about the industry and about their choices, so if that is the result of this new partnership, good for everyone. Fortunately, authors have always had a way to get on-going support and help with their publishing decision in advance of making any decisions by joining our free author’s center at http://outskirtspress.com/authors.php

The publishing industry, and POD in particular, is constantly changing and growing. I won’t be surprised to see more moves like this in the near and not-so-near future.

Competitive acquisition*

I might stand corrected from my earlier post today. It looks like it may be an acquisition of our competitor after all. Bertram Holdings, which is a private equity firm in California, looks like they may have acquired one of our competitors (they already have a stake in the other big one). Interesting, interesting… 
 
2011 Update: When all was said and done, Bertram Holdings ended up acquiring two more of our major competitors in the following 18 months and made us an offer with a multiplier so low it was insulting; and have since moved all those brands into the same offices in Indiana. So while their brand-separation remains (sort of), all books published under all those brands are produced in the same locations with the same people–in Indiana and India. Oh, what a difference two little letters can make.
 
* Originally posted on self-publishing.blogspot.com on September 6, 2007. To see why, click here.