New partnership provides a virtual and physical solution that will help institutions lower textbook costs, drive academic success and build an innovative campus store.
Akademos and indiCo today announced a partnership to provide full-service virtual and physical bookstore solutions for colleges and universities. This hybrid bookstore solution will dramatically lower textbook prices, provide an innovative campus retail environment, facilitate the transition to new digital course materials and increase student readiness and academic success.
The Akademos-indiCo partnership gives institutions the best of both worlds – an innovative virtual bookstore solution for course materials managed by Akademos, and a campus solution for general merchandise sales provided by indiCo, a subsidiary of the National Association of College Stores (NACS).
“This partnership addresses a critical market need for colleges and universities,” says Jonathan Shar, Chief Marketing Officer of Akademos. “There's significant opportunity for Akademos to partner with schools because of our proven impact on textbook affordability, but many institutions no longer have the knowledge and resources to run a general merchandise store themselves. Together, Akademos and indiCo will develop custom, one-stop shop solutions for institutions that want an innovative, future-proof model that lowers textbook costs and takes back the campus store.”
Akademos’ eCommerce platform and advanced tools reduce textbook costs for students, facilitate the course materials adoption process for faculty, and provide administrators and faculty with critical visibility and control over the textbook delivery process. indiCo’s suite of collaborative services gives institutions an alternative to the traditional leasing of their campus store by allowing them to remain independent from large bookstore-operating companies.
“While leasing the campus store was once a viable option, that model has deteriorated. We believe that independent stores best serve the needs of students and higher education,” says Robert A. Walton, NACS Chief Executive Officer. “Corporate leasing companies now drain more than $1 billion in profits from leased stores every five years. That is money that, through institutionally operated stores, could fund financial aid and other student services, employee benefits, and campus facilities renewal. That’s $2 billion every decade going into the pockets of corporate operators and their investors — money that higher education desperately needs.”
Through this partnership, indiCo’s Independent Campus Stores Collaborative services will provide institutions with a physical store solution for all merchandise categories, other than textbooks and assigned course materials. This solution can range from retail management consultation to full-service store design and management, including complete merchandising, retail POS systems, and staffing developed specifically for an institution’s needs.
“Through this strategic partnership with indiCo, the virtual and physical stores will work together and share specific connection points like cross promotion and general support to optimize and enhance the student, faculty and administrator experience,” said John Squires, Chief Executive Officer of Akademos. “It is possible to drive student success through more affordable course materials and maintain a successful general merchandise campus store – we are here to help institutions do exactly that.”
To see if this solution is right for your institution, click here to learn more.