For the past five years Aer.io has been building a platform where anyone could sell stuff on a website or social network and have the order drop-shipped from a supplier's warehouse or, in the case of digital content, have the content delivered by Aer.io.
Aer.io is something of a competitor to Gumroad, only without the digital-only limitation or Gumroad's other limitations, and now the startup has been acquired by one of those suppliers.
The Bookseller reports that Aer.io has been bought by Ingram Content Group, a privately owned print and ebook distributor. Aer.io is a natural extension of Ingram's existing distribution businesses, and that's one of the reasons why Ingram was one of Aer.io's investors.
"The addition of Aer.io addresses our customers' growing desire to connect more directly with their readers," said Ingram Content Group vp, president of digital products Marcus Woodburn in the announcement. "Aer.io extends the sales network of anyone with a web presence - whether a publisher, author or bookseller - and will provide the ability to sell content worldwide."
The deal closed on 9 December, and the terms have not been disclosed. But Aer.io has said that its existing staff will be joining Ingram. Aer.io founder and CEO Ron Martinez will continue to run the unit, reporting to Woodburn, "alongside a team within Ingram that will add sales, customer services, marketing and development support."
He added, "We're delighted to be able to marry Aer.io's diverse marketplace model with the enormous reach of Ingram. As a fully integrated, trusted Ingram service built to scale, we now have an unparalleled opportunity to work with publishers, retailers, media companies and others to grow a vast new network of consumers."
image by fredwbaker