Flat World Knowledge Announces New Bookstore Partnerships and Programs
Open-source college textbook publisher Flat World Knowledge has announced agreements with Barnes & Noble College Booksellers and NACS Media Solutions (NMS) to distribute its textbooks to more than 3,000 college bookstores in their respective networks for the 2010 fall semester.
Flat World also announced several pilot programs with NMS, a subsidiary of the National Association of College Stores (NACS), including a print-on-demand (POD) program, one of the industry’s first, according to a statement released by the publisher. The pilot programs are scheduled to launch in August.
“We partnered with Barnes & Noble and NACS Media Solutions to dramatically lower the costs of printed textbooks for students, including students on financial aid,” says Jeff Shelstad, founder and CEO of Flat World Knowledge. “The agreements will help tens of thousands of students lower their textbook costs. The average cost of a printed Flat World textbook is $29.95, or 75-percent lower than most conventional textbooks. We expect strong sales through these important channels.”
“We are committed to providing our students with the widest range of content options and price points available,” says Jade Roth, vice president, books and intellectual property at Barnes & Noble College Booksellers. “Partnering with Flat World and their state-of-the-art publishing platform aligns with our company’s mission to support the educational process and ensure that students have access to the tools they need to succeed.”
Flat World Knowledge will provide bookstores with digital files of its catalog of college textbooks. Since Flat World textbooks are openly-licensed, instructors have the option to remix, reorder, add and remove content. Then, the bookstore can print and bind paperback books, often within minutes or hours, according to the publisher.
University Book Store Inc. at the University of Washington in Seattle, and the San Diego State University Bookstore, among others, will be the first to pilot this new process. Students will be offered same-day pick-up of textbooks.