Bob Young’s now calls a renovated building on Hillsborough Street in Raleigh as home. providers a variety of services and marketplaces for artists, musicians, authors and others who want to self-publish and sell digital content. The company will host a grand opening of sorts on Thursday with a luncheon.

"We needed the additional space to accommodate the increasing volume of authors and publishers using Lulu to reach their readers,” said Young, the founder and owner of Lulu who also helped launch Raleigh-based Red Hat, the world’s leading Linux open source software developer and services provider.

“Even in a tough economy, or maybe because of it, there is an increasing demand for new books from technical manuals to poetry," Young said in a statement.

Lulu is based in a 28,000 square foot former warehouse near the N.C. State University campus. The building was renovated but retains a trademark yellow tractor on its roof. The building is the former home of North Carolina Equipment Company.

Lulu will base its 79 U.S. employees in Raleigh. The firm had been located in Morrisville. Lulu also has operations in Toronto, London and Bangalore, India.

Users from more than 80 countries have published more than 820,000 books and other titles.