Amazon acquires bookish social community Goodreads

29 Mar 2013

E-commerce, gadget and cloud giant Amazon has acquired Goodreads, the world’s largest site for readers and book recommendations which has a community of 16m who have added 530m books to their shelves.

The value of the deal wasn’t disclosed. The acquisition is expected to close before the end of Q2.

The move should provide impetus to the kind of success Amazon is enjoying with its Kindle devices and online bookstore.

“Amazon and Goodreads share a passion for reinventing reading,” said Russ Grandinetti, Amazon vice president, Kindle Content.

“Goodreads has helped change how we discover and discuss books and, with Kindle, Amazon has helped expand reading around the world.

“In addition, both Amazon and Goodreads have helped thousands of authors reach a wider audience and make a better living at their craft. Together we intend to build many new ways to delight readers and authors alike,” Grandinetti said.

Reading reinvented

Founded in 2007, Goodreads now has more than 16 million members and there are more than 30,000 books clubs on the Goodreads site.

Over just the past 90 days, Goodreads members have added more than four books per second to the “want to read” shelves on Goodreads.

“Books – and the stories and ideas captured inside them – are part of our social fabric,” said Otis Chandler, Goodreads CEO and co-founder.

“People love to talk about ideas and share their passion for the stories they read. I’m incredibly excited about the opportunity to partner with Amazon and Kindle. We’re now going to be able to move faster in bringing the Goodreads experience to millions of readers around the world.

“We’re looking forward to inspiring greater literary discussion and helping more readers find great books, whether they read in print or digitally,” Chandler said.

E-book reader image via Shutterstock

John Kennedy is a journalist who served as editor of Silicon Republic for 17 years