Case study

Curated Book Discovery




Subscription Platform


Media & Publishing

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Publishing startup Alexi delivers carefully curated lists from prolific individuals in the world of literature.

The all-you-can-eat business model doesn’t work for every media. Discerning readers seek real reading recommendations. Alexi, a new literary curation platform, delivers a handpicked range of books from the most creative minds of our time.

Relevant Curators Beats Full Library

Nearly as much time is spent seeking out great literature as actually reading it. With books and recommendations now so widely available, readers with precious little time often find themselves overwhelmed. Alexi founders, Andrew Kidd and Ayesha Karim, with their combined 40 years in publishing, are out to answer the question on the lips of nearly every passionate reader – “Read any good books lately?”.

Simplicity and Performance Paved the Way

For Alexi, we engaged our full process model from strategy through to design, build, launch and care. We started with a kick-off workshop to identify the core values Alexi sought to empower their unique type of reader. We explored a wide number of cases before arriving at a UX structure that leveraged user preferences to discover lists that fit them. Native mobile for iOS was chosen as a platform to support in-app reading and purchasing, while a custom Symfony2 CMS supports the backend.

Soft Launch with Exceptional Reception

Alexi was published in the App Store as public beta to gauge interest in the concept and ensure availability at key literary industry events. The novelty of the concept and freshness of design has been noted by journalists keeping tabs on publishing in The Guardian, Digital Spy and the Digital Reader.

Recommendations from literary figures Julian Barnes, Bret Easton Ellis, David Mitchell and Sarah Hall are among the first batch of exclusively curated lists. Development is ongoing to include e-reader, tablet support and purchasing options.

Noted and Praised by the Greats

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We've been collaborating with Folkmatic from the early stages of Alexi's development, and we haven't looked back since. Frederik and his team offer rich and creative conceptual input, smart and stylish design solutions and impressive technical expertise. It was clear from the outset that they genuinely understood and believed in what we were doing, and the decision to work with them is probably the best strategic call we've made to date.

Andrew Kidd

Co-Founder and CEO