Ingram UK Launches Wholesale Service 

Ingram has launched its wholesale service in the U.K. "with the intention of filing the gap vacated by the now defunct Bertrams," the Bookseller reported. The company had announced its plans to open a rival to Gardners, the main U.K. wholesaler, in July

Ingram UK "rolled out its services to publishers at the end of September, offering wholesale options for any title currently supplied from its operations base located in Milton Keynes. It is also carrying books it has actively purchased from publishers," the Bookseller wrote. A highlight of the service is its next-day shipping guarantee for paperbacks, hardbacks and POD titles, and Ingram said it is working "actively with publishers to develop wholesale relationships and grow [its] title base."

David Taylor, senior v-p, Ingram Content Group UK, said he is looking to fill the gap caused by the demise of the Bertrams wholesaler in 2020, noting: "I think Gardners is a fantastic company and they do a brilliant job. I think there is room in the market for a second wholesaler, we've had two for many, many years. There are things that we can do that maybe Gardners won't be able to do quite so quickly--print on demand is a good example of that."

Ingram is entering the market "at a time when the trade is experiencing huge problems with distribution," the Bookseller noted, but Taylor said: "One of the biggest threats to the distribution business--one which makes most publishers probably sit bolt upright a night in a cold sweat--is moving a warehouse. We moved our warehouse from Plymouth to Milton Keynes very successfully, we didn't lose any business. We're being quite careful--we look after our booksellers and publishers very, very carefully." 

He added: "There's no doubt the U.K. economic outlook is fairly gloomy, but books tend to be very resilient products. In the times of boom they don't go through the roof, and in the times of recession they don't drop off the chart. There's no doubt there is inflationary pressure in the system--we see it everywhere. Everything is going up, which has started to be reflected in the retail price of books--I think there's an inevitability about that."

"Put simply--our global strategy is part of supplying more books to more booksellers, locally," said Donald Roseman, v-p of commercial sales and operations at Ingram Content Group. "Publishers produce the content, we supply it as quickly and closely to the customer as possible, and good availability messaging supports local demand."

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