As E-books Grow, So Does Amazon

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New Bowker data gives the online retailer a 27% market share

With e-books' share of unit sales rising from 14% for the first nine months of 2011 to 22% for the same period in 2012, the biggest winners among retailers were Amazon and dedicated e-bookstores and digital download sites. According to the most recent data from Bowker Market Research, Amazon's share of all unit book sales rose to 27% at the end of September 2012 from 21% during the previous year, while the share of e-bookstores and digital audio sites jumped from 1% to 6%. Sites in the e-bookstore category include Apple's iBookstore, along with a number of smaller sites.

In addition to higher e-book sales, the gains at Amazon resulted from the insolvency of Borders; the defunct chain is listed in the other category and that category's share of unit sales fell from 21% in 2011 (which includes Borders) to 13% for the first nine months of 2012. Between September 2011 and 2012, Barnes & Noble's share of units slipped from 17% to 16%, although B&N was the only other outlet besides Amazon that had a double-digit share of the market. Independent booksellers' market share tied with e-bookstores and online sites other than Amazon, at 6% of unit sales through the first nine months of last year.

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SOURCE: Publishers Weekly
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