[Press Release] StreetLib launches author & publisher portal in Egypt

Loreto, Italy 29 January 2019.

To honour the Golden Jubilee of the Cairo International Book Fair, the world’s biggest literary event, the Italy-based digital books distributor StreetLib has begun its 2019 international expansion roll-out in Egypt.

StreetLib has launched a publishing portal for authors and publishers in Egypt to digitally distribute their books around the world, with no up-front fees.

Books can be published in Arabic, English and most other languages, and will be distributed to hundreds of ebook retailers and digital libraries worldwide, including to the world’s biggest ebook retailers like Amazon, Google Play, Kobo and Apple.

StreetLib CEO Giacomo D’Angelo said:

There’s a popular misconception that Arabs don’t read, yet three of the world’s largest book fairs are in the MENA region.

The Cairo International Book Fair, in its first two days, had more visitors than attended the USA’s Washington National Book Festival, and had a further 155,000 visitors on day three. Egyptians love their books!

We salute the incredible work of the General Egyptian Book Organisation in promoting reading in Egypt and making the Cairo IBF an event that has no equal anywhere in the world.

Explaining the need for the StreetLib Egypt author and publisher portal, StreetLib CEO Giacomo D’Angelo explained:

We believe everyone, anywhere on the planet has the right to read books, and we believe every author, anywhere on the planet has the right to be published and reach a global audience.

But, much as we love print (we also offer print on demand options) the production and distribution costs of printed books mean many people around the world — and not least across the Middle East and North Africa — are denied access to affordable books.

It needn’t be that way. A reader in remote Kalabsha should have the same books available as a reader in Cairo. An author in Cairo or Alexandria should have the same opportunity to publish their work as an author in New York or London.

Today, anyone, anywhere in the world with an internet connection can buy, download and read ebooks on their phones or tablets, no matter how far away their nearest book store is. And authors and publishers, no matter where they are, can upload and sell books to those readers.

This week StreetLib will be launching 21 new author and publisher portals across six continents, first in Egypt, then in Nigeria, Kenya, Ghana, South Africa, Singapore, Malaysia, Philippines, Jamaica, Bahamas, Dominican Republic, Argentina, Guatemala, Mexico, Spain, Australia, New Zealand, Fiji, Malta, Finland and Sweden.

In February StreetLib will launch author and publisher portals in Iraq and Morocco and at least one other MENA country as part of the second tranche of its six-continent 2019 global expansion.

The portals are for publishers of all sizes, from individual self-publishers to the biggest publishing houses, facilitating global reach in an international book market worth $143 billion (EGP 2.5 trillion).

Giacomo D’Angelo explained:

Since its inception in 2006 StreetLib has been at the forefront of the digital reading revolution, enabling authors and publishers around the world to publish and sell books to anyone that has an internet connection.

Today StreetLib distributes a large volume of digital books on behalf of publishers, from individual authors with just one title to big publishers with hundreds or even thousands of titles.

In the US, UK and western Europe digital books — ebooks and audiobooks — provide publishers with new revenue streams alongside their printed book sales. In 2017, according to one report, the US ebook market was worth $3.2 billion (EGP 56.5 billion) while the UK was selling ebooks to the value of $405 million (EGP 7.2 billion), Canada 136 million (EGP 2.4 billion) and Australia 126 million (EGP 2.2 billion).

At which point, let’s put those numbers in perspective.

Egypt has almost 50 million people online. Canada is selling ebooks worth EGP 2.4 billion with an online population of just 33 million. Australia is selling ebooks worth EGP 2.2 billion with just 21 million people online.

StreetLib wants to give Egyptian authors and publishers the chance to share in the global digital books market, and it won’t cost them anything up front. We just collect 10% from net sales made and pay the author or publisher the rest.

Visit the StreetLib Egypt author and publisher portal here.

StreetLib. A global gateway distributor for the 2020s.