“I saw an opportunity to pioneer "print on demand" in South America.”
- Year selected
- Gustavo Vorobechik
Why scour used-book shops for an out-of-print book when you can order a new one instead? Bibliografika is changing the publishing industry in Argentina. Building off research on the Argentinean publishing industry that Diego compiled for his thesis, he and his brother Gustavo founded Bibliografika in 2002. Diego and Gustavo are challenging the status quo of the publishing industry, one of the oldest in the world, with the help of creativity and new technologies. It doesn’t matter if the books are out of print, rare, or out of stock. It doesn’t matter if it is a new writer looking to publish his/her first book or a publisher that wants to print low runs of books to minimize risk. Diego and Gustavo established Bibliografika to build a value chain that is a win-win for writers and readers, as well as publishers and bookstores businesses. Bibliografika uses digital technology to print books on demand (POD), a printing process where a copy is not created until an order is received. This minimizes the economic risks of a publication printed through the offset process. Gustavo and Diego created a transparent online infrastructure where publishers and bookstores are connected through Bibliografika. This system allows the company to print anything from their complete catalogue and deliver the book(s) within five days of the initial request. Already the local leader of books printed on demand, Bibliografika is also a premier partner of Xerox and has established a strategic alliance with Publidisa, the biggest on demand printing company of Spanish books.
Bibliografika is changing the publishing industry in Argentina. Publishing incumbents in Argentina are mostly old-fashioned, family owned companies with little flexibility – a fact that was an obstacle when Diego and Gustavo started this venture. These companies use only offset technology, a system that is cheap only for printing large quantities of books. The brothers’ desire to understand these players allowed them to develop a robust business model that is transparent to each part of the value chain while bringing dynamism and new business opportunities to the industry. The brothers noticed that publishers were focused on offset printing methods, which involved hidden costs and inventory risk. Understanding that less than 20% of the 170,000 books published in Argentina were available to readers, they developed a business plan that would virtually increase the availability of books. They took their business plan to Xerox, the leading company in the development of on demand printing machines. Soon after, Xerox wrote a business case study about Bibliografika, and became a key business ally for the company. Already the local leader of books printed on demand (POD), Bibliografika now prints more than 70% of the Argentine book production segment with fewer than 500 copies per print run. Bibliografika has gained recognition for ”>helping to increase the status of e-books in Argentina and has formed an alliance with chain store Musimundo. Bibliografika is also creating strong alliances with companies like Google, for the Google book search project and Lulu.com, for the self-editing and printing books market.
The brothers have been doing business together since they were teenagers. Diego studied Business Administration and received his MBA while Gustavo studied law. During school, they developed notebooks with different universities’ logos and sold them to students. Before launching Bibliografika, they created a printing company that enabled clients to order printing materials through the Internet. Gustavo and Diego have a strong commitment to keeping alive the cultural value captured in books. They have helped young publishers develop their business on a POD basis and they are big promoters of scientific, technical, medical and cultural content creation.
Endeavor and Bibliografika
The Entrepreneurs have benefited from commercial leads and mentorship on improving business processes, and have attended an Entrepreneur Summit.
They demonstrate commitment by printing materials for Endeavor Argentina’s conferences free of charge, and speaking regularly at Endeavor events.