Scandinavian publisher Bonnier is setting up a self-publishing platform in the UK offering authors 100% of royalties.
The new venture is called Type & Tell and started operations in Sweden in 2015 followed by launching in Finland in 2016.
The deal for 100% royalties (I presume this is 100% net royalties after Amazon, etc have their share, although it doesn’t say) is aimed at bringing in self-publishers who will then pay for the author services offered by T&T.
The platform is in the early stages in the UK at present and has a web page at typeandtell.com/en with a sign-up form to be a test user.
Looking at the Swedish website, it seems that the firm will be offering a range of services for authors, including the usual ebook conversion and distribution but also print book production and distribution which does set it apart from some aggregators which only deal with ebooks.
It also offers marketing help, including an author portrait photo, book cover design, sending out review copies, designing ads for Facebook and for website banners.
Bonnier is a long-established media company which owns newspapers, magazines, TV and film production companies and book publishers throughout Scandinavia. It also has divisions in the UK and the US and an ebook and audiobook subscription service called Bookbeat.
There is increasing competition among distributors in the self-publishing sector. Pronoun (the aggregator formerly known as Vook) was taken over by traditional publisher Macmillan last year and is now offering authors a deal of 70% net royalties on ebooks priced from $0.99 to $9.99 sold in the US and Canada. But authors based outside the US get just 50% for Amazon.com sales.
If you publish an ebook with Kindle Direct Publishing and price it at $0.99 you will only get a 35% royalty from Amazon, so the Pronoun deal can double your money on lower-priced ebooks.
However, for Amazon sales in the UK and Australia the royalty falls to 41%, which is still better than the 35% rate for $0.99 books but quite a drop if your book is in the higher price tier ($2.99-$9.99) where KDP offers 70%.
I can’t imagine that Pronoun is making up the difference between the varying levels of royalty out of their own pocket so it looks like it’s using its connection through Macmillan to get the 70% rate. That means Amazon must be paying trad publishers (or Macmillan at least) 70% royalties at all price levels rather than the tiered structure on offer to indie authors through KDP.