Amazon Looks to Launch in India Next Year

In What's the Buzz by Hannah Johnson

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By Hannah Johnson

According to The Times of India, Amazon.com is exploring ways to enter the Indian market. The online retailer is talking to Indian e-commerce sites including Flipkart.com, LetsBuy.com and Exclusively.in, presumably about acquisitions.

The Times goes on to say that acquiring an existing Indian company is one of the preferred ways for foreign companies to gain a foothold in India — eBay acquired Baazee.com and Groupon bought SoSasta.com.

Sources told The Times that Indian e-commerce companies are resisting acquisition by outside companies, and that Amazon is considering launching on its own in India sometime next year. Another source said that the online retailers is building “a team of over 200 people” in Hyderabad, Banglaore and Chennai.

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If Amazon launches in India, the site will join Amazon’s other seven international sites in Canada, China, France, Germany, Italy, Japan and the United Kingdom.

Akshay Pathak reported earlier this month for Publishing Perspectives on a proposed amendment to India’s current copyright law, which would “allow the import of multiple editions of books into the Indian market, rendering the whole point of territorial rights a bit useless.”

The launch of Amazon in India could exacerbate this problem by allowing Indian readers to cheaply purchase vast numbers of English language books published in the US, UK and other English-speaking countries, bypassing local Indian editions.

However, Pathak also reported that more Indian publishers are preparing for the coming adoption of e-books and digital content: “In particular, academic publishers have been the frontrunners in adapting to new technologies and offering content on multiple platforms, not only easing access for students and readers but also giving publishers the opportunity to innovate and develop new content.”

A dedicated Amazon site for India could be the boost that publishers and readers need to quicken the adoption of e-books and possibly give Indian e-book editions an edge over foreign English-language titles.

About the Author

Hannah Johnson

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Hannah Johnson is the Publisher of Publishing Perspectives. Before joining PP in 2009, she worked as Project Manager at the German Book Office New York.