|Amazon.com Receives More than 1.5 Million Advance Orders Worldwide for ''Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince''; Delights Hundreds of Thousands of U.S. Customers with Delivery on Release Date and Additional Discount|
SEATTLE--(BUSINESS WIRE)--July 18, 2005--As of midnight on Friday, July 15, more than 1.5 million copies of "Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince" had been advance-ordered on Amazon's (Nasdaq:AMZN) retail Web sites worldwide, making the title the online retailer's largest new product release ever.
In the largest sales and distribution event in the company's history, Amazon.com teamed with UPS and the U.S. Postal Service to deliver hundreds of thousands of copies of "Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince" to eager fans across the United States on Saturday, July 16 -- the first day the book was available to the public. This guaranteed Saturday delivery option was offered for the same price as Standard shipping and was free to Amazon Prime members. Amazon's Web sites serving the UK, Germany, Japan and Canada also delighted hundreds of thousands of customers with release-date delivery on Saturday, July 16.
Also on July 16, Amazon.com lowered the price of "Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince" to $16.99, increasing its existing 40 percent discount to 43 percent. The company automatically credited the additional savings to all customers who placed advance orders for the book.
"At Amazon.com we are always working to increase efficiencies and pass more savings on to customers," said Greg Greeley, vice president of Amazon's worldwide media business. "We're thrilled that we could offer our customers a trivially easy, inexpensive way to receive 'Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince' on its release date, as well as a 43 percent discount on the book, and would like to thank them for making this our largest new product release ever."
Amazon.com customers also had the option to place an advance order for "Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince" and have it shipped via Amazon's Super Saver Shipping option, which is free on orders over $25, for delivery after July 16.
"Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince" became available for advance order on December 21, 2004, kicking off months of Potter-mania on Amazon.com right through the book's July 16 release. Additional highlights follow.
-- Amazon.com assembled its first-ever Harry Potter Kids Review Panel. These 10 young Harry Potter aficionados, ranging in age from 10 to 17 years, served as Amazon.com's Harry Potter "experts" on the Web site via self-made videos in which they shared their thoughts about the Harry Potter series and their predictions for Book 6. -- In the wee hours of Saturday, July 16, Amazon.com customers were able to share in the excitement as Harry Potter author J.K. Rowling read from the new book to a very captive audience at Edinburgh Castle in Scotland, via a free two-minute video stream of the event viewable on the Amazon.com Web site. -- As of the book's July 16 release date, nine of the top 25 books on Amazon.com's bestseller list were Harry Potter titles, including the hardcover, audio CD, audio cassette, and library editions of "Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince," as well as the "Harry Potter Paperback Boxed Set" (Books 1-5), "Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix" (Book 5), "Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone" (Book 1), the "Harry Potter Hardcover Boxed Set" (Books 1-5) and the hardcover edition of "Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets" (Book 2). -- With the unprecedented number of advance orders for the sixth Harry Potter book, Amazon's top three new product releases of all time are, in order, "Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince," "Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix" (Book 5) and "Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire" (Book 4), each of which set Amazon records for the number of advance copies ordered both on www.amazon.com and cumulatively on Amazon's retail Web sites worldwide.
Note About Amazon.com's Advance Orders for "Harry Potter and Half-Blood Prince": Advance orders placed to-date on www.amazon.com include orders from the online retailer's co-branded Web sites with Borders.com and Waldenbooks.com, but exclude orders from all other third-party seller arrangements and is not adjusted for orders that are subsequently cancelled. Advance orders to-date from Amazon worldwide include, in addition to the aforementioned U.S. advance orders, advance orders for the English-language version of the book placed on five of Amazon's internationally-focused retail sites (www.amazon.co.uk, www.amazon.de, www.amazon.fr, www.amazon.co.jp and www.amazon.ca), as well as Waterstones.co.uk and Virginmega.co.jp.
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As used herein, "Amazon.com," "we," "our" and similar terms include Amazon.com, Inc., and its subsidiaries, unless the context indicates otherwise.
This announcement contains forward-looking statements within the meaning of Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933 and Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934. Actual results may differ significantly from management's expectations. These forward-looking statements involve risks and uncertainties that include, among others, risks related to potential future losses, significant amount of indebtedness, competition, management of growth, potential fluctuations in operating results, international expansion, outcomes of legal proceedings and claims, fulfillment center optimization, seasonality, commercial agreements, acquisitions, and strategic transactions, foreign exchange rates, system interruption, consumer trends, inventory, limited operating history, government regulation and taxation, fraud, and new business areas. More information about factors that potentially could affect Amazon.com's financial results is included in Amazon.com's filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission, including its Annual Report on Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2004, and all subsequent filings.
CONTACT: Amazon.com Media Relations Kristin Mariani, 206-266-7180 SOURCE: Amazon.com