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Web Site Competes For Textbook Market

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Buying and selling college textbooks was probably my least favorite part of my collegiate experience. I always had the feeling that I was being royally ripped off on both ends of the deal. Both the purchase and the buy back of textbooks seemed shady. Knowing that you were probably paying too much and that when you went to sell the book back you would be lucky to get a fraction if anything for what you paid.

There are a whole slew of sites that sell used textbooks from Half.com to Amazon.com to Alibris. Business Week is reporting on a site that recently received $2.2 million in funding from Gabriel Venture Partners. The company is called chegg.com

The goal of the Web site is to provide cheaper alternatives for textbooks and other school supplies that students purchase. Chegg Chief Executive Officer Osman Rashid said, “The used textbook business has been wildly profitable for retailers. Our whole notion is to save some money for students.”

Josh Carlson who was a student at the time founded the company in 2001 at Iowa State University. It grew last fall and is focused on select universities and groups of schools.

The company is in a crowded field of competitors but hopes that recent mergers will strengthen it’s over all market presence.

To illustrate how difficult it could be to become a viable online textbook retailer I scanned some posts on this subject. One poster wrote,” If you are in college you should be bright enough to check Amazon or eBay first. That’s where all my textbooks came from. I then resold them to the bookstore for a profit at the end of the semester”

To end on an optimistic note one poster wrote,” This is great news for current and future college students! Its ridiculous to pay money for “College Algebra 57th Edition”… WTF has changed in algebra that warrants another edition? Has Quadratic Equations changed since last semester?”

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Mike is a staff writer for WebProNews. Visit WebProNews for the latest ebusiness news.

Web Site Competes For Textbook Market
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  • Guest

    have you ever tried out eCampus.com? I tried chegg and was having problems so I thought I would try something else out. a friend told me about them and I loved it! the prices are already cheaper and plus she gave me her code EE15007 and it saved me 5% on top of that. you should try it out!!