Online store sales swell

BERLIN — With growth rates of 10% to 15% per week, Bertelsmann said it is satisfied with its online bookstore BOL, launched five months ago.

According to Bertelsmann multimedia chief Klaus Eierhoff, 1,000 books a week are being sold in Germany via BOL and 2,500 in other European lands where BOL is active, including the U.K., France and the Netherlands.

BOL will launch into Spain next month, followed by Switzerland in September and Japan next year.

This fall, the service will expand to include online music shopping and an option to download music from the site.

Eierhoff said BOL will be sticking to media products unlike its U.S. competitor Amazon.com, which has expanded into drugstore products, auctions and food.

BOL has been earmarked by Bertelsmann as a candidate for a public listing, but the time frame is still up in the air.

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