Library Technology Guides

Document Repository acquires major stake in

Press Release: LibraryThing [May 16, 2006]

(Victoria, BC – 16 May 2006), the world's largest online marketplace for new, used, rare and out-of-print books, has purchased a 40 per cent stake in – a website that helps booklovers catalog their collections and introduces them to a vibrant social networking community focused on books. - - is part of the new generation of ‘Web 2.0' websites where users create the content. Launched in August 2005 by Tim Spalding, who is based in Portland, Maine, LibraryThing has already developed a dedicated global following among avid bibliophiles with 35,000 members who have catalogued more than 2.7 million books.

Members catalog their books in seconds using library quality data because LibraryThing accesses book information from the open access databases of Amazon and over 45 major libraries worldwide, including the Library of Congress.

The book lists form the basis of the content with users ‘tagging' each title with a word or phrase to describe it. Users can also write reviews, compile their own profile, and then examine the books, reviews and profiles of other like-minded bibliophiles who have similar tastes.

One of LibraryThing's most powerful tools is its ability to produce book recommendations for a member by analysing the catalogs of fellow users who own identical books and then revealing titles that may appeal.

A user name and password are the only requirements for an account. It is free to catalog up to 200 books. A paid account allows unlimited cataloging and costs (US) $10 for a year or $25 for a lifetime.

"Like AbeBooks, LibraryThing is dedicated to booklovers. The most exciting part of this deal is the unique information LibraryThing generates about books and book-buying habits," said Hannes Blum, CEO and president of "This data will help people find and buy more books on our site, and we're going to help LibraryThing by exposing the website to millions of AbeBooks' customers."

Tim Spalding, founder of, said: "By working with, we will have access to resources, expertise and marketing to enrich LibraryThing and make it more popular than ever. LibraryThing and AbeBooks appeal to the same people - dedicated booklovers - so this partnership is going to be very productive for both of us."

The deal follows AbeBooks' recent acquisitions of (Nov 2005), a price comparison shopping service for books, and FillZ (Feb 2006), a book inventory and order management company that assists booksellers to offer their books through the world's Internet marketplaces.

Tim Spalding will be at the booth (1515) at Book Expo America in Washington DC this Friday and Saturday, 19-20 May.

About is the world's largest online marketplace for books, with over 80 million new, used, rare, and out-of-print titles listed for sale by more than 13,500 independent booksellers from around the world. AbeBooks has millions of customers who purchase up to 25,000 books a day from its 5 global websites. A true internet success story, AbeBooks has been selling books online since 1996, and is a private company based in Victoria, BC Canada, with offices in Germany and Spain. Internet Retailer magazine ranked AbeBooks at No. 58 among North American online retailers in June 2005.

View Citation
Publication Year:2006
Type of Material:Press Release
Language English
Issue:May 16, 2006
Company: LibraryThing
Subject: Mergers and acquisitions
Record Number:13484
Last Update:2023-11-14 17:26:48
Date Created:2008-08-17 13:34:58