Blackwell, the UK's leading academic bookseller, has unveiled the launch of the 2.0 Espresso Book Machine (EBM) at its flagship store, 100 Charing Cross London. It is the first bookshop installation of its kind within the UK, allowing any book to be selected from an inexhaustible network of titles and prints on demand in just 3 minutes from a digital file onsite, online at www.blackwell.co.uk, or uploaded in person from CDs or flash drives.
The new Blackwell EBM, created by On Demand Books (ODB), uses revolutionary technology that allows publishers to offer titles through a novel channel of distribution at point of sale to the customer. It is able to print, bind and trim library-quality paperback books at 112 pages per minute, complete with four-colour covers, identical to factory made copies.
The arrival of the EBM in the UK is the result of an exclusive partnership between Blackwell and ODB and is anticipated to be welcomed amongst publishers, retailers and consumers alike. The Charing Cross EBM is hoped to be the first of many to be rolled out by Blackwell. Its debut at the flagship store will be followed by an appearance at the London Book Fair (April 20-22) before returning to its central London home permanently.
The EBM marks a new era for publishing and book retailing. It will enable publishers to cut out supply chain costs, match consumer demands and therefore eliminate unwanted returns. The EBM also removes the need for transportation, adding green credentials to the already impressive list of benefits saving on CO2 emissions and the pulping of unwanted books.
Blackwell predicts the EBM will increase shop sales due to being able to provide a far greater variety of books and popular titles to customers. Books needn't be out of stock again and the need to wait for books to arrive from a publisher should be a thing of the past. In addition, the EBM is able to bring rare texts back into production. As a committed supporter of small & independent publishers, the EBM allows Blackwell to provide a distribution channel for smaller publishers and hopes to attract a new audience of eager, budding authors and self publishers keen to see their work in print.
Andrew Hutchings, CEO of Blackwell, commented: "From the first instance we read about the Espresso Book Machine we were very keen to see it in action. From a retailer's and book supplier's point of view this is a fantastic opportunity for Blackwell. We are very much looking forward to working with ODB."
Dane Neller, CEO of On Demand Books commented: "Blackwell is a superb partner of choice for us to launch in the UK market. It has an outstanding pedigree of book history behind it with a reputation to innovate. Blackwell's academic books and specialist credentials both here and overseas are well suited for demonstrating the extent of the Espresso Book Machine's capabilities and we believe together we can maximise this exciting development in the book market."
Consumers can go to Blackwell's Charing Cross book store from April 27th onwards to witness their book printed on the spot, or order a print on demand book online through the Blackwell site.
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About Blackwell Ltd:
Blackwell is the leading academic bookseller in the UK with over 50 outlets across England, Scotland and Wales. It has built an international reputation for bookselling excellence with links to academic institutions and libraries around the globe and has continued to expand its UK base on high streets and in university campuses up and down the country.
Renowned specialist in medical books, business books and law books, Blackwell has now been trading for over 125 years from its world-famous flagship store at Broad Street in Oxford.
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