Jongbloed and the Dwarsligger

The paper: Indoprint 30 gr

Have you ever been frustrated while settling down in bed for the evening,  all warm and cozy, ready to read a good book, only to have the fatigue following a day of hard work and toil suddenly catch up to you simply because of the weight (or rather the design?) of the book and it promptly falls on your face?  No matter how many times you turn over, and try reading on your right-hand side, left-hand side, flat on your back, arms held high, or even on your stomach, on your elbows, with your hands behind your neck,... you end up giving up on your book. Well, Hugo van Woerden, CEO of Jongbloed, might just have found the ideal solution...

The dwarsligger® is an innovation from Jongbloed, the Netherlands’ first printer, binder and publisher of high-quality Bibles as well as other innovative book concepts. The dwarsligger® is a complete book, printed and bound in a convenient and compact format, which has been patented worldwide. The binding was specially designed with this concept in mind. On Sunday 6 September 2009 during the national book fair in Amsterdam, the first copy was presented to the Dutch minister for education, culture and science, Ronald Plasterk by bestselling authors Nicci french and Herman Koch. The dwarsligger® was launched on the market in the Netherlands by the Jongbloed publishing group together with NDC/VBK publishers, the most prominent player on the Dutch general book market. As its announcement, 80% of the print run was purchased by various retail channels, and second printings were already being ordered within two weeks. Strategic market research by the renowned marketing agency Branddoctors has tested the concept at length with booksellers and consumers. Both groups reacted with overwhelming enthusiasm. Its survey showed that over 90% of consumers want to buy the dwarsligger® since it’s easy to transport and can be read at any time and anywhere. “You can now read at stations, while walking, and while eating. The dwarsligger® goes everywhere and all you have to do is pull it out of your back pocket. You can even hold it in just one hand!” Moreover, the environmental impact is significantly reduced since the dwarsligger® is six times smaller than a “normal” book, and is printed on FSC certified thin paper. An attractive alternative to the digitizing of content, the dwarsligger® is greener, smaller, more convenient, and also more exclusive. Like everything else in our consumer driven societies would like to be.



Interview de Hugo van Woerden, CEO of Jongbloed

Hugo, how the idea of the dwarsligger® came to you?
It came exactly as you describe above: I was in bed one night with his standard heavy paperback and I found myself having to change position every time I turned the page. There was something not so nice about the way the book felt and I figured something had to be done about it. Was it the size of a page, the weight of the cover, the binding, or all of them put together? So I began tearing pages, chopping them around the edges to cut margins, and folding in half. By doing so the dwarsligger® was born, which is a complete book in a convenient size. A book that fits in your purse, and even in your pocket. A book you can take any-where and read anytime you want.

How has it been welcome?
The dwarsligger® has become a true success since its introduction in the Netherlands. Resulting in an individual publishing house that is dedicated to only publish books on dwarsligger® and publishing annually over a 100 titles both fiction and non-fiction. In the Netherlands the dwarsligger® has characterized itself by its creative promotional  activities towards consumers, which they have received with great enthusiasm. Additionally we have experienced a great interest from a large number of international publishers around the world. At the moment we are in discussion with various international publishers in order to launch the dwarsligger® internationally. With great pride we are working on launching the dwarsligger® in English, Spanish and French.