Imago Buys WeBook

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It’s not easy trying to buy books these days – times are changing fast. It used to be a case of simply going into a bookshop, seeing what you wanted and then parting with the cash. Then we worked out that we could browse for books online, and we’d never have to talk to anyone again.

Trying to buy Facebook though, has proved a lot harder. The offer’s on the table though and we’re still waiting to hear back.

Apple weren’t impressed by our attempt to get iBooks, so we delved back to our school days and started conjugating. Youbook doesn’t sound too interesting (it’s a human capital management and advisory firm since you ask, and no, we have no idea what that actually means); ubook might be more relevant, ewebook isn’t – apparently, sheep don’t read as much as they used to these days. Hebook seems unfairly to rule out the gender that actually does most of the reading, and Shebook, in contrast, gets bogged down in personal issues whilst resolutely insisting that nothing is ever the matter. Itbook should be about computing, right? Well it isn’t. Weirdly, it seems that Collins thought it the perfect name to call an imprint dedicated to “exceptional books in entertainment, music, fashion, design and art.” We have no idea why.

So we went out and bought WEbook.

WEbook (pronounced "we book" – I’m hoping you’d guessed that already) is one of the largest online communities, and is geared towards discovering new writers and helping them on their path to publication. And it is of course the first thing you’d think of Imago buying – after all, we are one of the largest providers of print production services in the world.

The key is in the word services – and more specifically, publishing services. And WEbook provides one of the best publishing services that the online world has to offer. And we have plans. Plans to rebuild it (it got partially nuked when the previous owners stopped paying their bills), to develop it, expand it and to ultimately allow it to lead a range of new services that we’re planning to offer.

So watch this space. Imago’s online presence is gently expanding, taking a great business into a brave new world.

(Of course, it’ll expand a lot more quickly if Facebook do accept our offer…)

Simon Rosenheim, Director, iBiblios

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