Rare Book Monthly
AbeBooks' <i>Gojaba</i> Expands to Brazil
By Michael Stillman
AbeBooks has brought its "no frills" bookselling to Brazil with the launching of a new Gojaba site for that country. Gojaba offers a basic listing service for nations either without as developed a book trade as the West or those using a non-Latin based alphabet. Unlike the regular AbeBooks sites, Gojaba does not provide any type of order processing or charging of credit cards. It simply refers leads to the local bookseller. Booksellers are charged only a listing fee, generally quite low to take into account the less developed nature of their internet book trade and local economic conditions.
Gojaba was launched in Russia and Sweden in February, and Abe reports that it now has 500,000 listings from over 130 booksellers. AbeBooks CEO Hannes Blum was quoted in a news release as saying, "Brazil has a huge population that's already shopping on the internet and they have a thriving book culture." Abe pointed out that Brazil is the world's fifth most populous nation, with 180 million residents, including many who are internet and technology savvy. The listing fee will be a flat 15 Real per month (roughly US $9.35). Those who sign up prior to July 20 get their first six months free.
The new Gojaba site is in the Brazilian Portuguese language, making it readily understandable to residents of Portugal as well. However, PR Director Richard Davies does not see a Portuguese Gojaba site in the near future. "Brazil has more people, more used books, and more dealers and book-buyers already using the internet," he explained. However, when asked about the Spanish speaking nations of Latin America, he noted, "If Brazil goes well, then we'd certainly consider other South American countries." For now, the next planned stop for Gojaba is Poland, with the launch anticipated for later this year.