Cover created by Marta D’Asaro

Opening Doors to the World.

Our global approach is also about making sure everyone gets the same opportunities to publish and access books.

A few days ago, I attended the opening session of the second round of the International Innovators Initiative (IN2NYC) in New York City:

As journalists and diplomats came to me after the session to know more about my first-hand experience with the program, I realized that it’s already been 5 super-intense months since I started! So, I think it’s time to tell you more about this program, what it means to me, and why all this has been very important for the growth of the StreetLib project.

IN2NYC, New York City, and Queens College

IN2NYC is a City-led program that helps international entrepreneurs expand or relocate their businesses to New York City by facilitating collaborative partnerships that qualify them for cap-exempt H-1B visas. The application for the second year is now open until 14th November 2017, and I really encourage all you brave entrepreneurs out there to seize this opportunity.

The NYC economy is large and diverse: according to NYCEDC data, 47 Fortune 500 companies are based in New York City and 46% of the city workforce is born outside of the United States. NYC is a major hub for finance, fashion, media, advertising, and healthcare. And it’s now the 2nd largest tech ecosystem in the world.

From a personal point of view, I see living in New York City and managing the StreetLib project in this incredible ecosystem an achievement in itself. And on top of that, I was chosen as one of the first entrepreneurs — out of 200 applicants across 5 continents — to be part of the IN2NYC program, which is one of the world’s best entrepreneur-visa schemes.

However, it’s about more than that: I was also lucky enough to set up our business office at the Tech Incubator of Queens College (TIQC). The 80-acre university campus is actually located in the most ethnically diverse urban area in the world, just a few miles outside Manhattan, at the heart of the Western Publishing World.

Am I the only one who thinks all this is rather fitting for what I’ll be doing here? StreetLib’s founding values are inclusivity, openness and technology: we couldn’t be more at home.

Queens College is a liberal arts college that offers undergraduate degrees in 78 majors, master’s degrees in 24 departments and 20 doctoral degrees. Queens College students represent 170 countries and speak over 90 different native languages. It’s part of the City University of New York (CUNY), the largest urban university system in the United States. It’s definitely the perfect environment to nurture our project!

The Quad of the Queens College

No man is an island

Queens College is the prime example of a large, inclusive organization that succeeds thanks to the diversity and the creativity of its community. Working with its students and like-minded teachers and professionals is not only an honor and inspiration, but also extremely rewarding and fulfilling.

This environment resonates very well with our long-term vision, as we want to overcome any geographical boundaries and use technology to give books a truly universal reach.

We want to serve all book lovers, regardless of their religion, the color of their skin, their country of origin, their social condition or their political ideas. These are virtual boundaries that still exist only in our heads.

I firmly believe in this project: I wouldn’t have crossed the entire Atlantic Ocean alone otherwise. And I cannot deny that working towards these objectives is something that makes me really happy, even if I know this is just the beginning.

No man is an island,
Entire of itself,
Every man is a piece of the continent,
A part of the main.
If a clod be washed away by the sea,
Europe is the less.
As well as if a promontory were.
As well as if a manor of thy friend’s
Or of thine own were:
Any man’s death diminishes me,
Because I am involved in mankind,
And therefore never send to know for whom the bell tolls; 
It tolls for thee. 
by John Donne

Where we’re going

StreetLib provides an end-to-end publishing platform where authors and publishers can manage their entire business: they can create and sell books; take advantage of our editorial services or the ones provided by our affiliated publishing professionals; seamlessly make their books available for everyone around the world; and be fairly and quickly paid without any exclusivity or limitations.

The fact that our service is used by thousands of authors and publishers keeps us motivated and committed to our mission. I’m delighted that, in the last few months, we have taken major steps forward in reaching and empowering a true global community.

First, at the start of summer, we improved our payout system by adding the possibility for users to be paid their royalties in every country in the world, via Paypal or Payoneer, on a monthly basis and with $0 threshold:

Those solutions open up our services to countries and people through secure, safe and low cost money transfers from any country to another.

Last month, we also upgraded the pricing section of our distribution system. Our authors and publishers can now set a different price for each online retailer in any supported currency. Not only that, the system automatically provides price suggestions according to current exchange rates (powered by the ECB), all of which can be customized with no limitations:

On top of that, we continue our globalization efforts by widening our distribution reach: this summer we added to our list great partners with the likes of Legimi.de, Skoobe (both via Libreka) and eSentral:

And to end on a high note, we are delighted to start a partnership with Bowker, a 149 year-old American company and the world’s leading provider of bibliographic information. The sole official ISBN agency for the US and Australian markets, it now recommends StreetLib as the best publishing platform for its customers:

Over the years, StreetLib has built numerous tools to help independent authors and publishers connect their books with readers. The progress we have made in recent months clearly shows that we are still striving hard every day to open our platform’s doors to the world.

We are not going to rest on our laurels. We will continue to develop new technology for the book industry and book lovers alike. And given how big, diverse, complex and beautiful the world is, we are only just getting started. Let’s go!!

Giac