From The Bookseller:
Another e-book subscription service is teetering on the brink of collapse after finding the business model unsustainable.
Blloon, developed by the founders of e-reader Txtr, has stopped taking on new users and will make a decision as to whether to close for good today, its c.e.o Thomas Leliveld has told The Bookseller.
It follows the news from Oyster in the US last month that its service was to close in 2016, despite raising $17m in funding from Highland Capital Partners earlier in the year.
Blloon launched in October last year offering a raft of titles from notable independent publishers such as Bloomsbury, Profile, Faber Factory, Guardian Books, Allen & Unwin, Lonely Planet and more and had plans to roll out to the US and Germany, where its founders are based, after its UK launch.
. . . .
“The service can only continue if the three parties, the users, publishers and service providers are all happy, and the users wanted more books, from companies like Penguin Random House, in our service. A lot of publishers have an issue with the unlimited model, for good or bad reasons. I was just about to hit the button of some more investment but I couldn’t see this building in the mid to long term into a financially healthy business. Then Oyster shut down and these guys had significantly more investment that I did and I said ‘if they are having trouble, this is going to be a problem’.”
Link to the rest at The Bookseller
PG says one of the challenges tech startups face when trying to innovate in the book business is having to deal with publishers who are constitutionally anti-innovation.
The major reason Amazon has been able to make ebook lending and subscription work is that it partners with indie authors who aren’t afraid to join it in experiments and innovation.