About Annie's

Who Are We?

Annie's have been the leading pre-read book stores since their beginning in the early 1970's. In the late 70's the original Annie (yes, there was an original!) began franchising throughout the New England states, and eventually as far as Florida and California.

In 1987, the parent corporation declared bankruptcy. Our owner's association, ABSA, purchased the trademarks to protect our rights and territories.

Are you affiliated with Annies Book Swap?

We sure are! Annie's Book Swap and Annie's Book Stop are the same thing. Annie's started as Book Swap, but many of the newer stores were named Book Stop. There is no difference between them. But both are registered trademarks of ABSA and may not be used without permission.

Can I open my own Annies?

Absolutely! The Annie's Book Stop Association is pleased that you like our bookstores enough that you would like to find out about opening one for yourself. We encourage new stores and can offer you experienced advice from our consultants drawn from our pool of current owners.

We are no longer franchises, but an active association of owners who meet annually to share our book and business experience, to swap stories and ideas and to provide a network of support. We are not in the franchising business, since that would involve a time and money commitment that we are unable to make. Our non-profit organization relies on the goodwill of many volunteers and exists solely to benefit Annie's owners.

But we can offer professional guidance to help you open your own Annie's Book Stop. In 1997, the ABSA recognized that many store owners often had inquiries from customers about how they too could open their own Annie's. Historically, ABSA voted a mandate in 1989 against opening new stores until the organization achieved stability and a myriad of legal issues could be worked out. We now have a decade's experience of cooperation together and are ready to share our knowledge with others who would like an Annie's of their own.

How much does it cost to open an Annie's?

Since Annie's is not a "turnkey" proposition, costs will vary widely, but it is relatively inexpensive compared to other retail businesses, since the bulk of the stock is pre-read books. ABSA does charge an initial, non-refundable application fee of $50.00 and there are very reasonable consulting and licensing fees. We can give you the current costs for this if you notify the committee member below of your interest. In addition, you will need money for shelving, carpeting, new materials inventory, etc. At this time, in 2007, you should expect to spend anywhere from $20,000 - $40,000 to get started. Your Annie's consultant will help you draw up a plan and project expenses.

OK, I'm still interested. What do I do next?

Write to any member of the ABSA expansion committee listed below. Tell them how to contact you. Also indicate the geographic area where you would like to open your Annie's. You will be contacted and given information about opening an Annie's. You will be told of the territorial opportunities that are available in your area. Many of your general questions will be answered at this time. If you decide to join us, you will need to send us your application fee, and you will be sent a current list of the consultants at that time. You can pick the consultant that you feel is right for you and then get started on a fun and rewarding career in the book business!

Remember, opening any business is not without risk. There is no guarantee that any business will succeed in today's competitive climate. But by opening an Annie's you will be joining a group of booksellers that has been in business for twenty-five years and really knows the ropes. Most Annie's are fun and profitable. You will never get rich with an Annie's, but you will enjoy going to work every day in your bookstore!

ABSA Expansion Committee

Paula Fox
Annie's Book Swap
369 W. Main St.
Northboro, MA 01532
Nancy Zlotek
Annie's Book Stop of Nashua
42 Vespa Lane
Nashua, NH 03060