Hachette Livre and Lightning Source Partner on Print-on-demand in France
Hachette Livre of France, the world’s second-largest publisher of trade books, and Lightning Source Inc., an Ingram Content Group company, have entered into a joint venture to offer print-on-demand (POD) services to the French book market.
The new POD operation announced this week will be located at Hachette Livre’s distribution facility in Maurepas, near Paris, and is expected to be operational in the first quarter of 2010.
Phase one of the joint venture will enable Hachette to vastly extend the range of services it makes available to both Hachette-controlled publishing houses and to third party customers of its distribution facility. With the successful completion of Phase one, phase two of the joint venture will be launched giving independent publishers the option to participate in the POD program, regardless of ownership or distribution contracts.
The two companies have already identified many thousands of titles from Hachette owned publishing companies as POD candidates, based upon not only their physical characteristics but also their sales profile. In addition, the new venture holds out the promise of bringing titles back into print that have been lost to the market for many years.
"The joint venture with Lightning Source in France is a strategic move that will allow Hachette to make leading edge digital technology available to all its business partners, no matter how small," said Arnaud Nourry, chairman and CEO of Hachette Livre. "Its implications are considerable. No book entered into the program will ever be out of print. The turnaround between incoming order and shipping is so short that copies can be delivered to point of sale as fast as if they were pulled from inventory, and mint-like in terms of quality. It is the perfect solution for low volume backlist and out-of-print books. At a time when 'out of print' books are the subject of much attention, POD offers a convincing solution. I am delighted we could partner with the world's leader in this technology, and look forward to a long, successful relationship."