Sainsbury’s has entered the e-book and social network market with the purchase of HMV’s shareholding in Anobii for a nominal £1. .
Sainsbury’s said the acquisition and its investment in the future development of the business would result in it having a 64% stake in Anobii, which currently has over 600,000 users worldwide and a library of 60,000 e-books. Anobii’s other shareholders are publishers HarperCollins, Penguin and Random House.
The Anobii website sells e-books to be read on a range of devices, including e-readers, tablets such as the iPad and smartphones. It also allows users to rate and review books, and share their comments with other members on the site and on different social networking sites.
Sainsbury’s said the deal supports its drive into the growing online and digital entertainment market. It follows the launch of Sainsbury's Entertainment in November 2010, the acquisition of online entertainment company Global Media Vault in October 2011 and the launch of a music download service earlier this year.
Competition for a share of the ebook market is hotting up, with Waterstones - also owned by HMV until a year ago - last month announcing it would start selling Amazon's Kindle e-reader in its shops.
NamNews - Tuesday 12th June 2012