A new chapter: Cost of books to fall by 80pc, says top seller

Thursday, October 6th, 2022 06:30 | By
The co-founder and managing director of Big Bad Wolf, Andrew Yap (centre), with the head of public relations section, Geetha Nair, and project coordinator Shaun Martha Asis at yesterday’s press briefing in Nairobi. PD/Philip Kamakya

The cost of acquiring a book will reduce by 80 per cent, one of the world’s biggest sellers, Big Bad Wolf, said yesterday.

Wolf said a book that was retailing at Sh4,000 can be in your hands son at Sh1,200.

Reduction in prices comes days before the commencement of a book fair on Saturday at Sarit Centre, Nairobi.

 The book fair will run for 13 days following a successful 11-day sales tour in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania, between September 8 and 18, this year.

Advocating literacy

It will be the largest book fair in the country’s history with over 500,000 English books on sale between October 11-23, with the single mission of encouraging good reading habits and advocating for literacy in English.

In August when the country was gearing up for the General Election, Big Bad Wolf co-founder Andrew Yap and partner Mohamed Noor, were waiting for a shipment of slightly over 1 million books into Tanzania and Kenya, respectively.

“In a number of these bookshops, we noticed that people eager to read books were coming in. A person would spend up to 15, 20 minutes on one book, but end up going out without buying it,” Noor told ‘People Daily’ yesterday after making a media announcement at a Nairobi hotel.

Reading culture

He said even though their mission was to get the government and book stakeholders’ nod to sell their books in the country, they were keen to establish a good reading culture in the country.

“More book enthusiasts could come into the bookstores at intervals, but maybe out of 10 only two could afford to buy books,” he pointed out.

The duo wanted to make a case for their next book sale in the capital, Nairobi, after Dar es Salaam, and the reality was there.

“It is indeed a momentous milestone for us at Big Bad Wolf Books as we journey into Africa. Our primary mission has always been to cultivate reading habits, increase English literacy worldwide and build a new generation of readers by making books more affordable and accessible to everyone,” he noted.

Access to knowledge

With 15, 000 titles available, Yap said they want Kenyans from all walks of life to discover the joy of reading and have access to knowledge, whatever their income level.

“To read. To learn. To grow — we are committed to our vision of wanting to change the world, one book at a time,” he added.

Noor expressed hope that Kenyans will benefit from the book sale.

“Come with your family or your friend and make it a must-visit occasion as you will be spoilt for choice with the amazing selection of books available on offer,” he added.

Genres such as science fiction, thriller, literature, young adult, cookbooks, art and design, among others, for all ages from young children to the elderly will be displayed.

 Inspire dreams

The Big Bad Wolf Books was founded in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, in 2009, as the brainchild of BookXcess’ founders, Andrew Yap and Jacqueline Ng, to encourage a reading culture and inspire dreams, among other goals.

Since its inception, the book sale has been hosted in 35 cities since 2016 — such as Cambodia, Hong Kong, Indonesia, Myanmar, Pakistan, the Philippines, Singapore, Sri Lanka, South Korea, and Thailand.

Others are Taiwan and United Arab Emirates.

BBW is more than just a book sale, it is a global reading advocacy initiative that aims to encourage people of all ages to discover the joy of reading — thus inspiring dreams and helping to realise them.

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