Amazon.com and HarperCollins Publishers have reached agreement on new pricing terms that covers both print and digital titles. The agreement calls for HarperCollins to set the retail prices of its digital books, with incentives for HarperCollins to provide lower prices to consumers. The deal’s specific financial terms are not publicly available, and the new agreement is expected to go into effect this week.
A HarperCollins spokeswoman said, “HarperCollins has reached an agreement with Amazon. Our books will continue to be available on the Amazon print and digital platforms,” The move benefits HarperCollins and its authors, because it means their titles will continue to be promoted and sold without interruption by Amazon, which dominates the sale of physical books online as well as e-book sales. The deal also benefits Amazon because it assures the retailer of a good profit on HarperCollins digital titles, with retailers receiving an estimated 30% of the sales revenue.
The new agreement ends the speculation that Amazon and HarperCollins were nearing a showdown that would disrupt the sale of HarperCollins titles. When Hachette and Amazon couldn’t agree on terms last year, Amazon stopped taking pre-orders on coming Hachette titles, reduced the discount it offered on many Hachette titles, and was sometimes out of stock on new Hachette books. The terms with HarperCollins appears to be similar in scope to those struck with three other major publishers with CBSCorp.’s Simon & Schuster publishing arm, Lagardere SCA’s Hachette Book Group and Macmillan.
-- Miranda Wang