Japanese e-commerce company Rakuten has agreed to buy Canadian eBook company Kobo for $315 million in cash.
Founded in 2009, Kobo has been fast to gain ground in the eBook market and has become a competitor to Amazon and Barnes & Noble offering eReader devices, a tablet and an eReading store.
The acquisition expands Rakuten’s push into the downloadable media business by adding eBooks to their digital media offerings.
Hiroshi Mikitani, Chairman/CEO of Rakuten, stated: “We are very excited about this next step. Kobo provides one of the world’s most communal eBook reading experiences with its innovative integration of social media, such as Facebook and Twitter; while Rakuten offers Kobo unparalleled opportunities to extend its reach through some of the world’s largest regional e-commerce companies, including Buy.com in the US, Tradoria in Germany, Rakuten Brazil, Rakuten Taiwan, Lekutian in China, TARAD in Thailand, and Rakuten Belanja Online in Indonesia, and of course, Rakuten Ichiba in Japan.”