Independent e-book and POD publisher E-Reads has cut print prices by as much as 25% in a bid to narrow the gap between print and e-book prices. “We’re hoping that readers who prefer paper will no longer be inhibited by the gap between our e-book and paperback prices,” said founder and CEO Richard Curtis.

Founded in 1999, E-Reads has made almost every one of its titles available as paperback, manufactured and distributed by Lightning Source. For the first seven or eight years of operation, POD contributed about 50% of E-Reads’ revenues, says Curtis. “Readers preferred paperbacks over the primitive e-book formats offered in the first stage of the e-book revolution,” Curtis notes. With the advent of the Kindle and other low-priced e-book formats, E-Reads print sales declined to under 10% of the company’s revenues. “We feel there’s still a very strong market for print as long as prices are reasonable,” he contends, “so we got out our flensing knives.”