Saeed Book Bank, one of the largest bookstores in the country and a “readers paradise” is planning to introduce a coffee shop, book talk, and book launch area.
Talking to Arab News the owner and CEO of the store, Ahmed Saeed said that he is considering expanding or downsizing the store.
The store currently comprises 3 floors and covers an area of 42,000 square feet. It hosts a staggering 200,000 books, making it the favorite location of book lovers.
Saeed is planning to add 2 more floors and open a coffee shop, book talk, and book launch area. Saeed explained that it may take up to 3 years after the CDA approves his idea.
He may offer the ground floor on lease to a corporation to meet expenses and save the store and his father’s legacy.
Due to multiple factors, like rising import costs, low sales, and the rise of digital media, rumors have been circulating that the store might not last long.
Rejecting these speculations, Mr. Saeed stated that he is considering new methods to attract customers.
75% of People Don’t Read Books in Pakistan
The decreasing trend of reading in the country and inclination towards technology and social media has reduced the sales of books, closing many stores in the country.
According to Saeed, many consider book reading in Pakistan, a waste of time, which is a sad reality.
According to the 2019 Gallup survey, 75% of Pakistanis do not have reading habits, and only 9% of people are avid readers in the country.
Saeed Book Bank – The Legacy of Saeed Qureshi
Saeed book bank was founded in 1952 in the garrison city of Rawalpindi by the late Saeed Qureshi. The store was later relocated to the northwestern provincial capital, Peshawar. It later moved to Islamabad in 1999.
Their business boomed in the capital and became a common name at that time. The store is still very popular but the business is slowly going downhill.
While the situation seems tough at the moment, Ahmed Saeed’s efforts give hope to bookworms in the capital and make us all look forward to a new and improved version of the “readers’ haven”.