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Massmann Internationale, Germany

Bookseller Marie-Christin Guzy explains how things work at the German library supplier, Massmann Internationale Buchhandlung GmbH.

Where is Massmann based? In Hamburg, Germany in a business park.

How large is the shop? We are a library supplier with no stock and an office with about 600 m2.

How many people work there? There are 21 people.

What kinds of books do you sell? Mostly we sell non-fiction titles in German, English and French. But we are specialised in supplying libraries with books from all over the world.

How long have you had the business? We have had it for 22 years.

How would you describe the current state of the book trade in Germany? We feel optimistic for non-fiction but a bit pessimistic for fiction and small booksellers. But as long we have fixed prices in Germany, we can be optimistic. It would be very hard for small booksellers if the prices were not fixed.

What do you most enjoy about your job? The books and making people happy by ordering books for them.

Is there anything that you don’t like about being a bookseller? Not yet.

How do you choose which books to stock? We do not have stock. We get orders from the libraries, order the books from the publisher and send the books by post to the customer.

Do you organise promotional events? We travel to libraries and fairs to promote our business and (new) services like our Approval Plan.

Do you sell books online? We do, you can order via our website and via our Approval Plan.

How do you get your books from the UK? Do you use a freight consolidator, such as World Wide Book Services? Our freight consolidator in UK is International Book Services Ltd. in the USA it’s Woodland /IBS and in Germany it’s the Bücherwagendienst from KNV (Koch, Neff & Volckmar GmbH).

Batch and Your Business

How long have you been using Batch? We have been using Batch since March 2008.

How does Batch help your business? Using Batch means particularly saving time and costs. We only need to transfer the money for a lot of invoices from many distributors once a month in only one amount per currency. As we have usually to pay bank charges for every bank transfer we could minimise our costs in this sector through Batch.
Besides we do not have to keep an eye on the invoices’ due date, especially when we have a payment target of two or three months as Batch shows us the invoices which have to be paid. Furthermore you can pre-estimate what you have to pay in a few months because all invoices are shown right after they have been created.

Is there anything we could do to improve our service to you? It would be very helpful when we could see the total amount of the invoices from one month on the Batch homepage. Currently we have to sum up all values of one distributor manually when we want to know the final amount in the next month.

Massmann Internationale Buchhandlung GmbH
Luruper Chaussee 125, 22761 Hamburg, Germany
Tel: 0049 40 767 004 0