And opening doors for everybody: we’re opening access to distribution, access to publishing professionals, and access to the fantastic privilege of working in book publishing
Exactly two years ago I arrived in New York City to set up StreetLib USA, our American branch, with the aim to expand our business in North America and continue building our global platform to enable more and more people to participate in what we called The Renaissance of Publishing.
Starting from scratch, I learned a lot. Today I sometimes feel I didn’t know anything before moving here. That’s how big of a change it’s been!
It took a few months to establish our ebook distribution business with our first American customers, and fast forward to today, we recently closed the first fiscal year with a big smile on our face and an honest awareness that we’re just at the beginning of a new, exciting chapter of StreetLib’s life.
I have to say that our first American customers took a big leap of faith to start working with us. At the time our system was quite rough and we didn’t know much about their specific needs and wishes. I’m very grateful to all of them, because it’s thanks to them that we were able to learn and to gradually improve our system, day after day.
I consider our publishing platform a work-in-progress, and being a “product-guy,” I’m always asking for more features and better usability from our stellar technical team. But honestly today our system is way better than it was two years ago.
I’m saying that because we just silently released an additional feature that looks boring and like nothing special, but that reflects something much bigger:
The StreetLib Tax Interview Process
All of the authors, publishers and publishing professionals that want to deal with StreetLib via StreetLib USA, Inc., have to invest two minutes of their time to complete the StreetLib Tax Interview:
We did our best to design a simple and quick process, and you can find a clear explanation of how it works in the following article:
Complete our Tax Information Interview
To get paid by StreetLib USA, you need to provide us with the relevant document requested by the US tax authorities: If…
If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
If you want to start working with StreetLib, you’re more than welcome to complete the process as soon as possible! Because it’s required for us to pay your books’ sales royalties and any other funds, such as those you might receive through StreetLib Market.
Once you have completed it, regardless of how many books you’re selling or the amount of your sales, or the country you live in, we’ve got you covered, and you can start using our services and take part of the digital publishing revolution without worrying too much about tax issues and any book-related bureaucracy.
But there’s more behind the scenes, and now I want to tell you more about that.
Just the tip of the iceberg
At the heart of our technology platform, at the very bottom of the engine under the hood, there is a module that we internally called StreetLib Bill.
Regardless of the billing situation and the country of residence of our authors, publishers, and publishing professionals, Bill is responsible for helping them get paid quickly and without any administrative hurdles. This is what really enables more and more people to be part of the new Global Digital Publishing revolution.
Let me explain this with a very simple example:
I live in New York City, and there are many publishing professionals working for the big publishing corporations here. Among them, many started working as freelancers, offering their high-quality and expensive services to the growing number of independent authors and publishers. This usually makes all of the involved parties happy, because they all love books and all do their best to make more and better books available. But in addition to dealing with books, freelancers also have to deal with invoices, taxes, and royalties. That can be a real pain. Furthermore, this pain gets worse, much much worse, if we think about dealing with international tax laws and other hoops to jump through.
If you want the kinds of interactions between author and publishing professional that make for world-class books to happen anywhere in the world, you need help.
StreetLib Bill is the system that makes it easy for a publisher in Bangladesh to hire a publishing professional in New York City, or vice-versa, helping both of them to deal with different currencies, with local taxes, seamlessly dealing with one another as if they were working for the same company.
The ultimate goal of StreetLib Bill is to make the bureaucracy disappear for all of our customers, and it is already working under the hood on the StreetLib platform. It enables thousands of authors and publishers to sell books all around the world and get their royalties automatically paid every single month. It also enables them to deal with any publishing professionals on StreetLib Market, managing necessary paperwork on their behalf. And it now makes it even easier for them with a simple and effective Tax Interview.
We’re excited to be able to connect books and book professionals across borders, to the point that we just coined a new claim: Going Really Global. We did that on StreetLib Connect, the forum for Reading, Writing, Publishing and everything else about Books. It’s open to everybody and you’ll welcome to join the discussion!