Annual sale returns with three million books

WITH over three million books under one roof, it is no wonder that the Big Bad Wolf book sale has been touted as the most awaited event for bookworms in the country.

Although it is only in its third year running but it is already known to be the world’s biggest book sale to-date offering a range of books with prices between RM2 and RM50 a copy.

“Unlike any book sale our discount starts at 75% to 95% off the retail price so customers can expect to purchase some really cheap books here,” said BookXcess managing director Andrew Yap when met at the launch with OCBC Bank (Malaysia) Berhad consumer financial services head Charles Sik.

Yap and his team spent months sourcing for books of various genres. They travelled to the United States, the United Kingdom, Australia and Singapore for that purpose.

He said everyone would be spoilt for choice as they have books for every genre — from gardening to cooking, fiction, anime, pop-up books, classics, biographies, photography, the arts, automobiles, architecture and notable best-sellers.

“In order to be able to sell these books at a cheap rate we have to first purchase them in bulk and pay them in cash,” he said, adding that the process was a tedious one.

When the team first started the book sale in 2009, he said they only had 120,000 books and gradually increased it to 230,000 with another sale the same year.

In 2010, they had 300,000 and last year Yap said they finally hit 1.5 million books. This year the figure doubled and he hopes to be able to bring more next year.

“We are already targeting to have some five million books on sale next year as the response has been very positive,” he said.

The sale at the Malaysia International Exhibition and Convention Centre in Mines Resort City, Seri Kembangan, Selangor started off with a 63-hour book-shopping experience, the first of its kind for the organisers.

“Our customers kept telling us how much they want to come by on the first day but due to work commitments they can only come by on weekends as we close early,” said Yap.

During the preview day, OCBC Bank contest winners of the Five Minute Free Shopping Spree pass had a chance to take home their favourite books at no charge.

This year, BookXcess, together with OCBC Bank conducted a corporate social responsibility initiative by donating 1,000 books each to the Red Readerhood project.

The project is also a collaboration with Astro, and the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees and will benefit 56 paediatric wards in the country.

The public are also encouraged to buy and donate books for the charities. A collection area has been set up for them to drop the books purchased.

OCBC Credit Card members can enjoy an additional five per cent discount for all books at the Big Bad Wolf sale which will end on Dec 23. Admission is free. It is open daily from 9am to 9pm, and until midnight on Fridays and Saturdays.

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