ABEBOOKS

AbeBooks is the world’s largest online marketplace for used, rare and out-of-print books, offering millions of editions from booksellers around the world. Founded in Victoria/Canada, AbeBooks acquired the German startup and European market leader JustBooks in 2001 to scale their joint business to a global level. AbeBooks was acquired by Amazon, Inc. in 2008.

Online marketplace for booklovers around the world

FOUNDED
1999, Düsseldorf
EXIT
Trade sale 2008
CATEGORY
Marketplaces
FOUNDERS
Hannes Blum, Boris Wertz, Florian Heinemann, Stefan Schubert, Malte Brettel

While studying and working on their PhD, five WHU students in the late 90s were facing a problem that would later become the groundwork of their business model: How to gain access to the necessary expert publications or appropriate specialist literature, with the books either being out of print or out of stock.

“Amazon wasn’t really established yet and the book market in Europe was extremely attractive because it was huge.” – Hannes Blum, Co-founder/CEO

So they founded JustBooks in Germany, scaling their online-based business as a true digital pioneer from German startup to Europe’s market leader in no time.

“Especially for used and rare editions, the new possibilities of the Internet added true value: Making a highly inefficient, very fragmented and local market finally transparent and searchable on a global level.”

While studying and working on their PhD, five WHU students in the late 90s were facing a problem that would later become the groundwork of their business model: How to gain access to the necessary expert publications or appropriate specialist literature, with the books either being out of print or out of stock.

“Amazon wasn’t really established yet and the book market in Europe was extremely attractive because it was huge.” – Hannes Blum, Co-founder/CEO

So they founded JustBooks in Germany, scaling their online-based business as a true digital pioneer from German startup to Europe’s market leader in no time.

“Especially for used and rare editions, the new possibilities of the Internet added true value: Making a highly inefficient, very fragmented and local market finally transparent and searchable on a global level.”