Ingram, the book distributor who owns Lightning Source, the primary print-on-demand competitor of the Amazon owned CreateSpace, has announced a new company, IngramSpark, will be up and running by July 1st.
IngramSpark will act as the gateway for publishers, small and self-publishers with a big enough list, to use Lightning Source for print-on-demand distribution and CoreSource for ebook distribution.
For authors who already use either Lightning Source or CoreSource, IngramSpark might not be of interest. But for those who are considering whether to use Lightning Source or CreateSpace, this could be a major factor in the final choice of which company to use.
Why use IngramSpark instead of dealing directly with LSI? The stories of how complex using LSI can be exist for a reason. Aaron Shepard himself, one of the primary advocates of using LSI for POD as a major part of any self-publishing author's business plan, suggests first time authors investigate, if not actually use CreateSpace for their print-on-demand service and distribution to Amazon.
Questions authors will want to check into include the discounts an author will be able to set using IngramSpark. The primary advantage of using LSI instead of CreateSpace was the ability to use the short discount business model. Discounts as low as 20% could be set using LSI while CS requires a 40% discount.
Competition is good. If IngramSpark can serve as a source of competition for CreateSpace, self-publishing authors and small publishing companies who rely on print-on-demand will be well served, by the two giants of POD in the industry no less.