21 May 2012
Commenting on the Waterstones announcement of its agreement with Amazon to sell Kindle eBooks and its range of digital devices, Richard Mollet, Chief Executive of The Publishers Association said:
“This announcement has come as something of a surprise for many in the sector, as the widespread expectation was that Waterstones would seek to compete with rather than join the market leading e-book retailer.
“Clearly the tie-up will be very significant for both publishers and consumers.
“It will allow consumers to benefit from both physical and digital offerings at Waterstones; this may well lead to an increase in foot-fall in the high street which would be a positive outcome.
“However, we note that the competitive landscape in the retail market will be significantly changed by this agreement with the likelihood that Amazon’s exceptionally strong position in e-book sales will be further enhanced.
“Ultimately, publishers hope that the agreement presents the opportunity to drive sales of e-books and enhance reader choice.”