retail news in context, analysis with attitude

GeekWire has a story about Amazon's in-house book publishing business, which essentially allows the e-tailer to compete with outside publishers with which it does business.

According to the story, "In 2016, the company’s publishing division plans to release 2,000 titles, up from 1,200 this year, and today, it ranks as the second-largest publisher on Kindle in the US."

As it has grown the number of titles it offers, Amazon also has expanded the topics it offers.

"When Amazon Publishing first launched in 2009, it was primarily focused on nonfiction, but to fuel its growth, Amazon has started investing in other topic areas, such as narrative nonfiction, memoir and biography," the story says, noting that it now has a variety of publishing imprints, or brands, under which it does business.

GeekWire writes that "many of the imprints have recognizable names, having been borrowed from the streets surrounding the company’s Seattle headquarters. For instance, there’s Thomas & Mercer (mysteries and thrillers); Lake Union Publishing (contemporary and historical fiction) and Jet City Comics, which is a play on Seattle’s nickname (graphic novels and comics). Amazon has also acquired a few, including Brilliance Publishing in 2007, which publishes spirituality and self-help books. Its newest imprint, Waterfall, was launched in February 2014 and is focused on publishing Christian titles."
KC's View:
Here's the kicker. While other booksellers have been leery of offering titles published by Amazon's imprints, the story notes that Amazon is even seeing progress in getting its titles into other venues.

This is, I think, indicative of Amazon's larger goals, which could be to offer more and more private label and differentiated products in a broad range of categories.