The Bookseller’s Katherine Rushton reports that the Random House Group plans to start selling books directly from its website as early as next month, group m.d. Peter Bowron has confirmed. The move is the latest development in the publisher’s 5m pound digital investment program, which will also see “several thousand” RH backlist titles placed in a digital archive and a “significant number” made searchable online by the fourth quarter this year.
Bowron said the publisher would discount its books, but “not by much”, as it does not want to compete directly with booksellers. Digital director Fionnuala Duggan said that RH, which has long linked its site to Amazon, had decided “it was time for us to do it on our own”. “It’s not really any different from the customer’s point of view. From the trade point of view, it’s just a question of how we organise the fulfilment.” The RH archive will be in place at the end of this month, and will include all the company’s titles from the past two or three years, growing to “several thousand” later this year.