A Student With a Dream
Glen Nothnagel, like many other college students had a problem- every time he went to go buy textbooks for his classes he found himself paying outrageous sums of money to get them; likewise, whenever he went to try and sell his textbooks back he found that he often couldn’t resell them, and if and when he did, he usually took a pretty substantial financial loss. Nothnagel knew that most college students didn’t have a whole lot of money in the first place, and what they did have they didn’t want to spend on textbooks. He noticed that there was a pretty significant gap in the market between the average textbook buyer and the re-seller and so in 2007, he dropped out of the college of DuPage where he had been attending as a freshman, and with $2000 of his own money he leased out a 1,000 square foot building and set about buying up used textbooks from friends and fellow students to build his inventory.
Building the Dream
The business officially started in 2008 and worked on selling books through existing online vendors such as Amazon.com and Half.com at 20-30% normal retail value which gave them a competitive edge on their larger competition. In his first year of business Nothnagel’s company, EZ Book Recycle Inc., made about $200,000 through online sales, and by 2010 the company was raking in about $4,000,000 a year though its website, sellbackyourbook.com. The company, which originally sold only textbooks, now sells a wide variety of student related gods ranging from graphing calculators to CD’s to fiction books and video games.
Sustaining the Dream
In the world of Amazon and much larger competitors, one might not expect Nothnagel and his 12 man company to succeed, but Nothnagel continues to succeed by offering competitive pricing and great service. The website now offers Paypal for customers and has been accredited by the Better Business Bureau. Factors like these combined with perks like free shipping continue to make Nothnagel business shine, and at 25, his business continues to grow and add new products to their line to keep in touch with consumer wants.