Goodbye to Círculo de Lectores, after six decades bringing books to Spanish homes.

Círculo de Lectores has succumbed to companies capable of taking a book anywhere on the peninsula in 24 hours.

That technology changes the way we see the world and our habits is not a secret. That does not impact the markets either. And now it is the turn of the endearing for many Círculo de Lectores.

The company, founded in 1962 and acquired by Grupo Planeta five years ago, had been in losses for almost a decade.

In recent attempts to save the company by including new products that had nothing to do with books, the business model was exhausted: the problem was not the products offered but the sales model. Catalog sales no longer make sense in a society permanently connected to the internet and with a logistical capacity that can take orders anywhere on the peninsula in a maximum of 48 hours without difficulty.

Yesterday, November 6, the commercial network of the Círculo de Lectores, made up mostly of pensioners who distributed books with shopping carts at readers' homes, was deactivated. The difference with the rest of the platforms for the sale of books on the internet? Círculo de Lectores offered distribution once a month and the rest (Amazon, Fnac, Casa del Libro…) almost immediately. We live in times in which the immediacy of the service is a value that makes a difference for the consumer and a month of waiting to receive the latest news from your favorite author is not accepted when you can get it in 24 hours.

Technology changes our way of seeing reality, our desires, our habits and our needs.

The world changes, businesses change, but in one way or another, books continue to reach Spanish homes and the good news is that the consumption of books has increased in the last year according to the sales figures of the publishing sector.

Círculo de Lectores will continue, for the time being, as an online sales platform, competing with the new online bookstores.

Although we readers resist reading digitally (the digital book only represented 5% of book sales in Spain in 2018), the truth is that, endearing or not because of the years that the Circle has been distributing stories in the Spanish houses, the distribution of books in a shopping cart seems, in this digital society, an image to remember. Vintage as you would say in these times.


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