JustBooks - India's First Community Library Chain*



Case Code : CLMISC014
Publication date : 2012
Subject : Miscellaneous
Industry : Retail
Length : 03 Pages
Teaching Note: Not Available


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Abstract: ICMR India ICMR India ICMR India ICMR India RSS Feed

The case is about an entrepreneurship venture, the JustBooks Community Library Chain. It was started by Sundar Rajan in 2008 in Bangalore as a small library. It expanded rapidly to other cities in India. The case describes the idea behind JustBooks, its growth, operations, and the use of technology that helped the company expand rapidly and achieve high levels of customer service. It ends with a discussion on the challenges a community library chain can face in the time of e-book readers, and downloadable books.


The highs and lows of an entrepreneur
Operating a community library chain
Use of technology in start-ups
Introduction of retail concepts like self service and RFID in a community library chain


JustBooks CLC (JustBooks), one of the largest community library chains in India, was launched in 2008 by R Sunder Rajan (Rajan), an engineer. A voracious reader, Rajan found that there was no good library near his house in Bangalore. To get to the nearest library, he had to travel a long way, braving the chaotic traffic. It was then that Rajan decided to open a library as a part time business. He established JustBooks in May 2008, in Whitefield, Bangalore. To his surprise, the number of subscribers increased quickly, going up to 2,000 within 6 months. Rajan then decided to take a break from his work at i-flex Solutions, where he was involved in designing software products for financial services companies...

Questions for Discussion:

1. "As long as children continue to write on paper, India will have a market for paperback books." Does this comment hold good in the age of e-book readers?
2. Examine the qualities of an entrepreneur. What are the qualities that have made Sundar Rajan an entrepreneur?
3. How important is the use of right technology for a start-up venture? Examine with reference to JustBooks.

Key words:
JustBooks, Community library chains, RFID technology, start-up venture, entrepreneur

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