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An Israeli AI startup turns text into a book in two weeks

Spines, described as the world’s first comprehensive artificial intelligence (AI) publishing platform, has raised a $6.5 million seed round led by Aleph with participation from previous investor M-Fund, bestselling Start-Up Nation coauthor Dan Senor and LionTree. The publishing industry, valued at $37 billion today and projected to grow to $41 billion by 2027, remains primarily analog and offers few options for marketing and monetizing to self-publishing authors.

The Spines platform reduces publishing time from six months to two weeks while reducing costs by 30 percent and offering a suite of services for authors. Under the guidance of a production manager, Spines handles both editing and book design, creating more than 70 formatted versions of the front, back, and spine for the author to choose from, and allows authors to decide when they would like to upgrade to a human at any part of the process.

Spines also automates the metadata optimization process and listing the book across 100-plus channels. After the book is live, the platform provides users additional options for AI-driven marketing features, royalty management and distribution.

Founder Yehuda Niv went from an unknown upstart to publishing 15% of the books in Israel within a decade and is poised to surpass that percentage more quickly in the United States with the new platform. The Spines headquarters is in Herzliya, while the US office is in Florida.

Last year, Spines published more than 500 titles and plans to publish a total of 3,000 new titles by the end of this year. That rate compares to an approximately nine-per-day average of top publishers. Authors simply upload their manuscripts, and within two weeks, they will be able to see their books published, optimized and available to readers globally.

“Spines is exactly where we want to invest in AI,” said Aleph Partner Michael Eisenberg, adding that as an author, “I can tell you that the current book publishing process is expensive, painful, and long.”

Spines, he said, can make a traditional industry “much more efficient, available to more customers, and better at its job.” M-Fund Managing Partner Lior Elkan said, “Long before  ChatGPT launched, Yehuda presented us an ambitious vision for the huge market of publishing, an area where traditional VCs overlooked.”

Niv said the investment round “represents a critical step in advancing our proven use case and rapidly expanding availability in a market in need of a tech-enabled alternative to the costly, inefficient status quo.”

Abigail Klein Leichman