Seven months after its New Delhi launch, the STUDYeBUDDY e-bookstore now offers digital content from 32 publishers, including Usborne, Crabtree Publishing, Kendall Hunt, Ashgate, Ocra, Carson-Dellosa, Global Finance School, Pustak Mahal, Popular Prakashan, and Aardash Books. Another 40 publishers are at various stages of contractual discussion to join the free e-platform, which offers a fluid navigational experience to store and access content, says founder and CEO Nizam Ahmed of DiTech Process Solution, parent company of STUDYeBUDDY. Ahmed notes that the ePub-based content can be read anywhere at any time after downloading the appropriate aps from the site. At the Frankfurt Book Fair, DiTech will be looking to sign up more international publishers for both StudyeBuddy as well as for its suite of publishing tools.
"STUDYeBUDDY ensures that all streams of educational requirements are met while offering audio/video learning materials of the best quality,” Ahmed says. For instance, he notes, medical students in India will be able to access videos to better understand specific medical procedures performed by doctors around the world. Site users can highlight important points, write notes, add bookmarks, and perform robust keyword search while reading content online as well as offline through iOS and Android apps. This provides users with a personalized reading experience. Ahmed currently has a 105-member sales force to promote the platform throughout India, with future expansion planned to cover the rest of the subcontinent. “Our platform differs from others in the market, especially its delivery model, which has built-in B2B capabilities that offer both subscription and retail options,” he says. The subscription model is mostly offered to educational institutions, whereby customized e-content packages are provided to fit specific course or class requirements. On the other hand, customers can purchase the e-books on a perpetual access basis.
With STUDYeBUDDY, a Web portal through which educational books are sold to a niche audience, and DiTech’s digital publishing services, clients have access to end-to-end solutions. “We take care of every single aspect that goes into creating a book from copyediting to content development as well as converting the title into multiple electronic formats,” says Ahmed. At Frankfurt, in addition to StudyeBuddy, DiTech will be promoting two services, Typefi and indexing. Typefi offers process automation, content creativity, XML scalability, and multilanguage publishing. “Given the accelerated proofing and composition processes through TypeFi, publishers can offer up-to-the-minute content, shorter publication time, and instant updates for online deliveries,” Ahmed says. “These are just some of the benefits of TypeFi Publish that we will be introducing to clients.” DiTech is now working with several clients including Insight Guides (U.K.), which is using this system.
“Our services, be it STUDYeBUDDY or digital publishing solutions, are direct results of our constant search for innovative solutions and continuing R&D in publishing services. Our goal is to support publishers and help them understand and overcome technical barriers while tapping into new market opportunities and novel avenues to monetize their content. STUDYeBUDDY, especially, is targeted at the 100 million active Internet users in India, with the numbers expected to hit 237 million by 2015,” says Ahmed, emphasizing that the new market potential is too attractive for publishers, international and national alike, to ignore.