Better World Books
A full-fledged triple bottom line company
Better World Books uses the power of business to change the world. They collect and sell books online to donate books and fund literacy initiatives worldwide. With more than 8 million new and used titles in stock, they are a self-sustaining, triple-bottom-line company that creates social, economic and environmental value for all our stakeholders.
Better World Books was founded in 2002 by three friends from the University of Notre Dame who started selling textbooks online to earn some money, and ended up forming a pioneering social enterprise — a business with a mission to promote literacy.
They are not a traditional company with an add-on “cause” component. Social and environmental responsibility is at the core of their business. You could say it's in their DNA.
They are breaking new ground in online bookselling. They believe that education and access to books are basic human rights. That's why books sold on BetterWorldBooks.com help fund high-impact literacy projects in the United States and around the world. That's why they commit to matching every purchase on our website with a book donation to someone in need - Book for Book™
All books are available with free shipping worldwide. And in case you're concerned about your eco-footprint, every order shipped from Mishawaka is carbon balanced with Green-e Climate certified offsets from 3Degrees, a leading green power and carbon balancing services firm.
Here’s the best part: In addition to selling new titles, Better World Books supports book drives and collects used books and textbooks through a network of over 2,300 college campuses and partnerships with over 3,000 libraries nationwide. So far, the company has converted more than 117 million books into over $15 million in funding for literacy and education. In the process, they have also diverted more than 73,000 tons of books from landfills.
Better World Books is among a unique and growing group of triple bottom line companies who understand that profit is not the only way to measure business success. People also matter. And so does the planet on which we all live.
For Better World Books, the triple bottom line comes in lots of forms. From helping to build a nursing library in Somaliland to offering customers carbon neutral shipping on every book they buy, doing good is not just a part of Better World Books’ business—it is the business.
We've been thinking about some people we're proud to know. People like John Wood, the founder of Room to Read. John quit Microsoft in 1998. Eight years later, he’s building libraries in rural villages in Nepal with the "scalability of Starbucks and the compassion of Mother Theresa." John has written a book about his journey called Leaving Microsoft to Change the World.
Better World Books loves literacy programs like Room to Read, Books for Africa, National Center for Families Learning, and our 80 other literacy partners. They provide the building blocks for children and families to learn, grow, and share in the vast collection of human knowledge committed to paper. It just makes sense that a bookstore ought to generate funding for these programs, and they do it with every book we sell.