Booktopia turns new page with global e-book giant

Booktopia turns new page with global e-book giant

Australia's leading online bookseller Booktopia has responded to a spike in demand by penning an exclusive digital partnership with global e-book specialist Rakuten Kobo Inc.

At a time when people have been encouraged to stay indoors and practice social distancing, Booktopia has observed a surge in demand for e-books and audiobooks.

Through the deal its customer's will now have access to Kobo's five million titles.

"At Booktopia, we are in tune with the needs of our customers, and it is our constant goal to bring them new ways of immersing themselves in reading," says Booktopia co-founder and CEO Tony Nash (pictured), whose company recently completed a $20 million capital raising.

"We are pleased to be partnering with Rakuten Kobo and expanding our digital footprint in Australia, launching a new offering of eBooks, audiobooks and devices for our customers.

"Together with Kobo, we're exploring new ways to make reading easier for customers by offering exceptional experiences however they prefer to shop and read."

In the wake of social distancing measures, Booktopia has seen a 285 per cent increase in people purchasing historical fiction books, particularly some of the longer books or series.

Australia saw readership of thrillers increase by 157 per cent, crime by 127 per cent and a 110 per cent increase in fiction.

Kobo was founded in Canada but is now owned by Japan-based Rakuten, and has a presence throughout Europe, North America, Brazil, South Africa, and parts of Asia.

"Rakuten Kobo's greatest successes come when we work with great booksellers. Booktopia's combination of deep expertise and loyal customers is the perfect compliment to Kobo's focus on creating excellent digital reading experiences," says Rakuten Kobo CEO and president Michael Tamblyn.

"Collaborative partnership with booksellers has been hugely successful in other markets like Canada, where we were founded by and continue to partner with the book retailer Indigo; the Netherlands where we are partnered with Bol.com; or France and Spain where we've partnered with Fnac, to name a few.

"If a book retailer is fielding a competitive eReading experience in the face of global competition, we are usually working with them. We look forward to this next phase of growth in Australia."

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