Each country has a single approved and designated agency that issues ISBNs for publishers and self-publishers located in that country. Bowker is the official ISBN agency for the US; Nielsen is the official ISBN agency for the UK and Ireland; Thorpe-Bowker is the official ISBN agency for Australia (https://www.bowker.com/en/products-services/isbn-au/). IngramSpark does business in many other countries, so we encourage each customer to ensure they are acquiring their ISBN from their country’s approved ISBN Agency. To find the approved ISBN agency for your country click HERE.
In certain instances, IngramSpark will allow customers to request a transfer of an ISBN and the files for a book from a previous publisher into an IngramSpark account. However, in these instances, you must own the ISBN outright - it can't be an ISBN that belongs to and was assigned by your previous publisher.
In some instances, IngramSpark customers can request the transfer of the ISBNs (and files) they own from some other self-publishing platforms. For ISBN transfers from non-self-publishing entities, you must reach out to your previous publisher to request a transfer of the ISBN into your IngramSpark account. Click HERE to learn more about the Title Transfer process.
Again, you must own the ISBN, as ISBN agency rules do not allow for the transfer of ownership of a publisher-owned ISBN. Click HERE to learn more about ISBNs.
When entering an ISBN recognized as being owned by another publisher you will either be blocked from setting up the title or allowed to request a transfer of the ISBN (if applicable - i.e. from another self-publishing platform).
Our website will guide you through the process of requesting an ISBN transfer if applicable. The IngramSpark Client Support team will process valid ISBN transfer requests with the respective publishing platform.
Once a transfer has been granted, our Client Support team will contact you to let you know that the transfer has been completed. The timeline of this process can vary greatly (2-6 weeks), as it is largely dependent upon the response of the current holder of the ISBN granting permission for the ISBN transfer. To expedite this process, we recommend reaching out directly to your previous self-publishing platform instead of processing the request via the IngramSpark Client Support team.