53. Kelli Fairbrother, Founder of xigxag

Company: xigxag

Website: https://xigxag.co.uk


About Kelli & xigxag

Despite the massive global growth of audio formats, xigxag co-founder Kelli Fairbrother felt that audiobook innovation wasn’t keeping pace with other digital media trends, and risked being left behind. “It’s an unloved format of publishing that hasn’t been innovated in decades, despite spoken word audio experiencing tremendous global growth.” says Fairbrother, a keen reader and listener. But she’s no industry insider. Her ambitious vision for xigxag springs from a unique background that includes McKinsey, Whitbread, Deluxe Digital Media, print-tech unicorn Gelato and the U.S. Army.

“Audiobooks were brilliant in helping me enjoy more books, and I love hearing an author tell me their own story in their own voice, but the format hadn’t evolved since books on tape.” Fairbrother met her co-founder, Mark Chaplin – a former Director of Production Technology at ITV, and set out in 2019 to revolutionise the format with the most advanced digital reading platform ever. Their proprietary format, the x-book®, is the first listen-and-read book concept in the industry: users can listen to the audiobook, read the ebook, or do both – all in one format and all for one price. xigxag’s innovative business model encourages demand by rewarding consumption – like a subscription without a subscription and the x-book® offers audiobook listeners first-ever features like quote, search, take notes, and lookup words.

“Our aim is to shape the future of books, to make reading more accessible, more engaging, easier and more sustainable.” After closing a successful funding round recently, customer growth has taken off and xigxag have been named a Tech Nation Rising Star, and a Startup to Watch in 2022 by TechRound and Hiyield.


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