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Like the way cheetah pursue a sickly gazelle

October 23, 2013

An interesting tidbit on how Amazon does its business with small book publishers, from Brad Stone’s book about the company, “The Everything Store“, via Jim Edwards:

The company’s relationship with those publishers was called the Gazelle Project after Mr. Bezos said Amazon “should approach these small publishers the way a cheetah would pursue a sickly gazelle.” A joke, perhaps, but such an aggressive one that Amazon’s lawyers demanded the Gazelle Project be renamed the Small Publishers Negotiation Program.

Mr. Stone writes that Randy Miller, an Amazon executive in charge of a similar program in Europe, “took an almost sadistic delight in pressuring book publishers to give Amazon more favorable financial terms.” Mr. Miller would move their books to full price, take them off the recommendation engine or promote competing titles until he got better terms out of them, the book says.

“I did everything I could to screw with their performance,” Mr. Miller told the writer.

I suspect Amazon also use the same tactic in its e-book deals, and yet the U.S. DoJ punished Apple instead. It’s Amazon who they should have pursued, stupid.

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