Amazon.com, Inc. (NASDAQ:AMZN) won a deal worth around $30 million providing e-books to New York City schools, which is the largest school district in the nation.
The city’s Panel for Educational Policy voted in favor of getting the books from Amazon.com. Amazon got a three-year contract for the Department of Education, which takes effect in the coming school year. The Panel for Education Policy also has an option to extend it for an additional two years, at an estimated worth of $34.5 million.
Amazon won the right to sell digital textbooks and other content, but they are not going to sell hardware such as kindle’s, to every New York school through an internet marketplace site. The New York school district has around 1.1 million pupils in more than 1,800 schools.
Amazon spokeswoman didn’t respond to request for comments immediately.
$4.3 million worth of content from Amazon is expected to be bought by the New York Education department in the first year contract, which rises up to $8.6 million in the second year, and $17.2 million in the third. Amazon will earn a commission of between 10 percent and 15 percent.
In Amazon’s search to be established as a player in the education department, the news comes as a boost. Most of the technology companies have put their sights on the classroom department, seeing it as an effective way to establish their brands and also a ready made market. It is also a way to influence lifelong buyers at a tender age.
New York also has some advantages in doing this deal. Buying more digital books is cheaper and storage space is also kept free from the printed texts. The education department also plans to make the e-books bought from Amazon through its marketplace site, will be accessible on a wide variety of devices including e-readers, tablets, smartphones and laptops.
This is not the first time that Amazon has been involved in education. They recently bought the startup TenMarks Education, which helps teachers create math curricula. They also rolled out public-relations campaigns entirely focused on influencing children’s attitudes toward math.
The company also has some agreements to operate co-branded sites to sell textbooks and some other merchandise to colleges including the University of Massachusetts-Amherst and Purdue University, installing package pickup centers.