Credit: Contributed

Online bookstore opens in Kelowna

“Our goal is to encourage people to list the book for sale, allowing the seller to earn some money”

A new Kelowna startup wants to help you clean off your bookshelf, encouraging you to sell your books when you’re finished reading them.

Local Reads launched in September and was created by Camille Jensen and Dan Arbeau with a goal to make it easier to buy used books locally.

“People are buying new books every day but when they’re done with those books they often get put on the bookshelf where they’re no use to anyone,” said Jensen.

“Our goal is to encourage people to list the book for sale, allowing the seller to earn some money from their book purchases while helping others find an affordable copy of a book instead of buying new.”

To date, the company has more than 500 used books for sale and the largest used inventory to browse online available in Kelowna. Individual booksellers are selling books as well as the company’s first partner, High Browse 2nd Hand Books.

“Our mission is to be a one-stop resource for finding a used book before buying new,” said Arbeau.

“We also hope people will see that it doesn’t make sense to ship a book from Indiana, for example, when someone has a copy available in our community, reducing carbon emissions and keeping money local.”

Local Reads is a member of Accelerate Okanagan and is using Kelowna as a pilot to test their technology book platform. If successful, they plan to scale Local Reads nationally.

“Last year Canadians bought approximately 50 million physical books,” said Jensen.

“That’s a lot of books, and unfortunately many of these books are only used once. We’re excited to see if we can make it easy to buy used, and keep books circulating in their communities.”

To buy or sell used books, visit www.LocalReads.ca.

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