Amazon.com Inc. will likely see its market share of e-book sales slip to 72 percent this year from 90 percent in 2009 as competition intensifies from Apple Inc.’s iPad and Google Inc., Credit Suisse Group AG analysts said.
At the same time, Amazon.com, seller of the Kindle e-book reading device, may boost digital book sales by 83 percent this year to $248 million from $135 million last year, the analysts said in a note today. By 2015, those sales should reach $775 million for a market share of 35 percent, they said.
“We envision a scenario where Apple, Amazon and Google eventually split the market,” Spencer Wang, Kenneth Sena and John Blackledge said.
Industrywide, digital sales will grow to 20 percent of the book market by 2015, compared with about 1 percent last year, the analysts said. They said they expect e-books to represent about 3 percent of total book sales in 2010.
Seattle-based Amazon.com may face more pressure to raise prices of e-books sold for the Kindle after some publishers said they want more control over pricing, the analysts said.
Many new e-books cost $9.99 on the Kindle, compared with the $12.99 and $14.99 some book publishers seek. Last month, Amazon.com said it would cede some pricing control to Macmillan, a unit of Verlagsgruppe Georg von Holtzbrinck GmbH.
Apple’s Revenue Plan
For its iPad, Apple said it will grant publishers 70 percent of revenue from e-books sales and keep the remaining amount. Macmillan, News Corp.’s Harper Collins and Lagardere SCA’s Hachette say they want system that mirrors Apple’s, Credit Suisse said.
“All other publishers who have signed up with the iPad are likely to follow course,” the analysts said. Apple announced on Jan. 27 that it had agreements with Macmillan, Hachette, Harper Collins, Pearson Plc’s Penguin and CBS Corp.’s Simon & Schuster to sell books through a new online retail store.
Amazon.com, the largest Internet retailer, fell $2.13, or 1.8 percent, to $117.53 at 4 p.m. New York time in Nasdaq Stock Market trading. The shares have lost 13 percent this year.