mojoreads first all-in-one social reading app


mojoreads serves as a multi-sided platform where demand by readers meets supply by publishers and authors alike. On the other hand, the platform is combined with powerful curation, collaboration and content marketing tools. With Kiran Pasavedala and Naresh Uppada heading the India division of mojoreads (log.os India pvt ltd.), Neel heads the content division of mojoreads, operating from Delhi and is instrumental in onboarding Indian publishers. “We are a fun loving team and work on the entire mojoreads stack. Driven with a social benefit for both publishers and users, we are committed to deliver next gen global reading platform out of India,” tells Neel. “Our aim is to bring a social connect among the readers by providing a seamless collaborative experience around the books.”

USP of mojoreads

Volker Oppmann CEO“On mojoreads, we are combining community, shop and reader technology on a single platform. So, every time you come across an interesting book – be it by browsing a friend’s bookshelf or because someone posted review or quote – one click is all it takes to instantly experience the book. The special thing about mojoreads is the fact that when it comes to reading samples, you are not limited to the first few pages of a book but anywhere inside the book. A click on a quote in your timeline takes directly to that very passage and you can start test reading from there,” tells Neel.

“While every other known platform does one thing good – ecommerce, social platform, reader, self publishing platform, content marketing or publisher analytics, we are the first all-in-one social reading app. That’s our biggest differentiator. Users as well as publishers need not use a bundle of tools to stay connected and relevant. User sign up, discover content, create collections, purchase, read books, rate, review, recommend to their followers or post in groups – all in one place i.e., mojoreads,” he adds.

The background…

mojoreads is a social benefit corporation governed by a non-profit organization.“The idea behind mojoreads dates back to the times when our co-founder and CEO Volker Oppmann was still working for Thalia, one of the major booksellers in Germany. Volker and his team had sold their previous company textunes to Thalia. Later they headed the digital unit at Thalia, to build what is now known as the tolino alliance – a joint venture of German booksellers, promoting their own digital brand and the only initiative so far to gain back market share from Amazon. But while the tolino alliance was focusing more and more on e-ink based devices and the connected web shops, Volker sensed that the future of reading was neither about e-ink devices nor web shops, and that booksellers on the web eventually will turn into something like commercial digital libraries.Only that those “libraries” would no longer be libraries or booksellers but deeply integrated platforms serving the needs of readers and writers alike. So, he ended up co-founding mojoreads with Kiran Pasavedala and Naresh Uppada,” tells Neel.

Journey so far…

mojoreads mobile app timeline and readerStarting with a team of three, mojoreads built a prototype in early 2016 to showcase a demo to publishers and to validate the idea. Being a spin-out of a social foundation, a majority of German publishers onboarded as a sign of support for the company. Volker has been in the publishing industry for over a decade and his experience sure played a role in further iterating the product with publishers’ needs in mind.

“Once publishers and ebook aggregators responded enthusiastically to mojoreads, we raised a seed fund from social investors and German publishers. We quickly grew the team both in Germany and India. By mid of 2017, we had acquired over 99% of the German ebook content on our platform including the big 5,” tells Kiran. “India being one of the fastest growing internet markets in the world, we wanted to grab a pie of this market with our mobile apps. During late half of 2017, we pivoted to add print books onto our shop and partnered with Umbreit, Germany. This got us instant access to over 4 million print book catalogue.”

Focus on India…

“India has a growing population of internet literacy and curious youth to consume content digitally. Our primary focus is to bring as many digital natives and millennials who can truly unleash our platform’s capability. The incentivization aspect of the platform will make every user into a content marketer which will be highly beneficial for publishers and users alike. With content from Indian publishers, we anticipate to grow faster in terms of user acquisition here in India. As our goal is to build a world class go-to platform for everything books – connecting people, authors and books at once place, India plays a significant role in achieving it,” tells Naresh.

The technology…

The platform is a combination of the most advanced ebook reader, a collaborative framework (within the context of book respectively text-based contents), an e-commerce platform crafted to buy/sell text-based content (such as books, e-books, journals, articles, etc.) and a data analytics powerhouse. The mojoreads cloud platform stores and processes millions of e-Pubs and other text content to be streamed smoothly to the customer’s apps. Smart infrastructure ensures that there is no downtime of applications and there is always an automated check on the content being provided by our publishers. With Content Streaming Technology (CST), end users almost get an instant download experience while they open any book, including samples on mojoreads because the content (in this case e-Pub) does not have to be downloaded for reading previously. This saves a lot of data bandwidth for users. With Dynamic reading sample it allows user to read 10% of the book as a sample and our smart algorithm dynamically calculates the sample read. In a way, the platform can be used by publishers to market their content and find their target userbase much more easier.

Advantages for publishers…

With publisher dashboard, mojoreads allows publishers to directly drop their books in any format of flowable text, be it in pdf or epub, along with the meta data sheet and see the book available for sale in the shop. Besides the status reports and error notifications, publishers will also get to see real time dashboard with sales and reader stats. This info is going to be vital for publishers in predicting what books are going to do well on the platform. Publishers can also have control over the sample size percentage that end users can access.

“Authors and publishers can create groups and directly interact with fans to promote books, offer discount coupons and encourage readers to review and rate their books. Every week a new author or a popular reader is featured in our shop as “Book DJ of the week,”” shares Neel.

Benefits of Mojoreads to the readers…

On top of an awesome reading experience, mojoreads has a social layer to help connect people who love books. Follow friends, favourite authors, books and join groups to stay engaged with the community and discuss books. All members also get to earn virtual credits for every sale that happens through their unique link shared across other social platforms. These virtual credits can be redeemed to purchase more books on mojoreads. Users can write notes or comments, share quotes and access books directly from their timeline. Users can create their own groups or can join any public groups whereas an approval of group admin is required to join Private groups.

The way forward…

“We have conquered and onboarded almost the entire trade ebook catalogue in Germany, we are now scaling in India and are signing contracts with publishers at a brisk pace to onboard new content starting with trade and eventually into academic/scientific publishers. We also partnered with print book distributors in Germany and started selling hard copies on our platform. We look forward to such partnerships here in India as well,” concluded Kiran.

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