Bookmate has raised $3 million in Series A funding, the company announced this week.
Bookmate has been making noise over the last couple of months, winning the 2014 Publishing for Digital Minds Innovation Award at the London Book Fair. It’s an e-book subscription based service based in Russia. It has more than 400,000 titles on its service with more than 1.5 million users worldwide.
Ulmart, a large retail outlet in Russia, has funded Bookmate for it to be used to accelerate the global expansion of BookMate, starting with Turkey, Scandinavia and Latin America this year. Funding for Bookmate comes as part of $6.5 million funding package from Ulmart to Dream Industries, with the balance of the funds given to other Dream Industries projects.
The funding for Bookmate means Ulmart is expanding beyond consumer electronics.
Following the investment participation of Ulmart in Dream Industries, the companies will launch a joint digital content service on the Ulmart platform, according to a press release. Starting in June, Bookmate’s innovative eBooks service will be rolled out across Ulmart’s customer base.
“Bookmate is optimized for post-piracy markets where the Pay-Per-Download model does not work. Not all markets are the same and for most non-US markets, readers want unlimited access to books combined with strong social and discovery features available on whichever mobile phone they use,” said BookMate co-founder Simon Dunlop. “This can only be achieved via subscription. Subscription also enables us to integrate a range of new revenue channels. Bookmate has pioneered this model in Russia and is leveraging its experience as it launches in new markets. This investment will enable us to accelerate growth and convert some of the bigger deals we have been working on.”
Bookmate was also recently named as one of the 18 startups at BookExpo America competing in the 2014 Startup Challenge.