Wednesday 26 October 2011

The OFT Decision on the Amazon/Book Depository Merger is a Disappointment...

I think there are a lot of readers and writers who will disappointed today; the OFT (Office of Fair Trading) has cleared Amazon in its intention to take over the Book Depository. They will not be referring the take-over to the Competition Commission.

You can read this article on the Bookseller website that explains some of the reasoning for this decision.

The Booksellers Association, one of a number of organisations who sent representations to the OFT during the consultation period this summer, are concerned that Amazon could put its competitors out of business, now the take-over has got the go-ahead.

"Tim Godfray, chief executive of the BA, said: “ Amazon now has even more power to put its bookseller competitors out of business and, having done that, it will be in an excellent position to increase prices and/or reduce choice.” "
The BA website didn't have anything about the OFT decision in the news section of their website at the time I posted this, so here's to The Bookseller again.

I'd be very surprised if Amazon hadn't been preparing for the merger in the meantime, so I don't expect its completion to take too long now.

Amazon features in the financial news today, with the announcement that their third quarter's profits have slumped (that's July to September) - likely due to their investment in the new Kindle devices, Fire and Touch.

This time next year it may be an entirely different situation.

So for those book buyers who don't want to buy from Amazon, now is the time to support small booksellers, or go to the publisher and buy direct from them- a lot of them are offering this now.


Rosalie Warren said...

That's disappointing news, Carol. I've always liked the Book Depository and will be sorry to see them swallowed up by Amazon.

Carolb said...

I agree with you Rosalie.
Amazon will be gaining established delivery routes (which aren't currently available to them) by this merger.

Rosemary Gemmell said...

Thanks for posting this, Carol. I haven't used the B.D. but I do sometimes buy straight form independent publishers.

Carolb said...

I know a few people who preferred B D, Rosemary, as it meant they were not using Amazon. Perhaps publishers will see those people buying direct from them now.

Alison Runham said...

Noooo! How had I not heard about this?
Darn. I really like using BD. Amazon are shoring themselves up though, I imagine. are their biggest competition in many markets, and they've been taken over by Rakuten, who are baying for Amazon blood (and I know this for a fact - insider info LOL!)