Kobo sold to Japan’s Rakuten
Kobo Inc., the Canadian manufacturer of e-readers and a newly released tablet device, has been sold to Japanese e-commerce company Rakuten Inc. in a $315-million (U.S.) deal.
Tokyo-based Rakuten will acquire 100 per cent of Kobo’s total issued and outstanding shares, the company announced on Tuesday. The sale is also a windfall for Indigo Books & Music Inc. (IDG-T6.730.304.67%), which created Kobo and then sold it off.
“Rakuten is already one of the world's largest e-commerce platforms, while Kobo is the most social eBook service on the market and one of the world's largest eBook stores with over 2.5 million titles,” Kobo chief executive officer Michael Serbinis said in a statement on Tuesday. “This transaction will greatly strengthen our position in our current markets and allow us to diversify quickly into other countries and e-commerce categories.”
So ... anyone heard of Rakuten before today? There's a website here: http://global.rakuten.com/corp/
Press release here: http://global.rakuten.com/newsrelease/2011/1109.html