Thursday, January 17, 2008

Great News In The Village!

Drumbeat to Villager of Electronic Village for this great info!

Three Largest Black-Owned Bookstores Join Forces

One of the Ngoza Saba principles that I strongly support is Ujamaa (cooperative economics). I've blogged before about the need for each of us to be more focused with our Black spending power. We can correct many of the ills in our community if we simply support Black-owned businesses whenever possible. As such, it is great news to see that AALBC,CushCity, and Mosaic Books the three largest and most established web sites focusing on African American literature joined forces to offer comprehensive online book promotion options to self-published authors and small publishing firms.

Together, the three web sites have over 30 years of combined online presence and over 4 million page views per month. Each site brings different strengths to the venture., founded by Troy Johnson of Harlem, N.Y. in 1998, is now the largest website dedicated to promoting books by and about African Americans., co-founded by Willie and Gwen Richardson of Houston, Tex. in 1998, is the world’s largest African American Internet retailer with over 20,000 products online, including books, DVDs, Greek products, calendars and art., founded by Ron Kavanaugh of the Bronx, NY, in 1996, was the first site created to showcase African American literature. It recently celebrated its 10th anniversary online.

“This effort brings unprecedented exposure to millions of African American book readers worldwide,” says Johnson. “I am pleased to work with Cushcity and MosaicBooks to bring African American authors and consumers together.”

The three sites will initially offer self-published authors and small presses simultaneous, prominent placement on each of the three sites’ home pages. There are also plans to expand these coordinated services in the future to include e-blasts and other marketing opportunities for authors.

The announcement comes on the heels of recent news reports highlighting the growth in the number of African American titles published annually and the resultant increase in book sales revenue. Based upon book sales figures for 2006 released by the American Association of Publishers, African Americans spend about $1 billion of the estimated $24 billion spent in the U.S. annually on books.

Villagers, how many of you have purchased books from any of these three online Black bookstores in the past year? Can we make a commitment to support these three Black businesses over the coming weeks and months?
What say u?

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