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This morning on Fox Business, the CEO of BetterWorldBooks discussed their business model and current financial status. I had never heard of BetterWorldBooks but the idea sounds very interesting. Basically BetterWorldBooks takes old books and sells them online. When they sell a book they donate the proceeds to literacy groups on four continents. The call the business a “social enterprise”.
On their FAQ page they outline how they get the books they sell, “Books collected by Better World Books come from two primary sources: the over 1800 college and university campuses on which we run textbook drives and nearly 1400 libraries and thrift stores that send us discarded and donated books.”
The CEO noted that up until now they mostly sold the books on eBay and Amazon. They are investing this year in building the BetterWorldBooks.com site and are hoping to sell the books directly to the public. You can also purchase a carbon offset for your book shipping.
The company expects to see revenues of $31 million in 2009.