Kobo Inc., a global leader in eReading, and the Mondadori Group, Italy’s leading retailer, and publisher of books and magazines, today announced a partnership to bring the Kobo eReading platform and its award-winning eReaders to the Italian consumer. Under the agreement, Mondadori will bring Kobo eReaders to market in the fall and will provide a complete eReading experience. Mondadori produces Italy’s largest network of editorial products in the country and owns one of the biggest Italian online media stores, with a catalogue of over nine million products. This network includes books and eBooks from the most important Italian and international publishers, films, music, games, and gift ideas, and provides the ideal platform to bring Kobo’s leading eReading solution to the Italian consumer. The partnership between Kobo and Mondadori will bring a new way for Italian readers to enjoy their favourite books.
“We are thrilled to bring our premium lineup of Kobo eReaders, services and eBooks to the Italian market through the amazing network of Mondadori,” said Mike Serbinis, CEO, SE, Kobo. “The adoption of digital books in Italy has been tremendously successful with the market valuated at almost €10 million last year. We expect this to grow significantly this year and we are thrilled that Mondadori and Kobo will be working together to give consumers a content-rich eReading experience”.
“The strength of the Mondadori portfolio of books, magazines and stores is combined with the innovative Kobo eReading platform, an excellent solution for the Italian market,” said Maurizio Costa, Mondadori Group Deputy Chairman and CEO. “The way people are reading is transforming and our combined solution will ensure that consumers can access the reading material they want to read with the highest flexibility. The adoption of the Kobo platform by the Mondadori retail chain is a step towards the integration of physical retail and distribution of digital contents. We are convinced that the digital revolution is nothing but an evolution in our publishing role.”
Kobo is a Canadian-based company that was founded in 2009. Since that time, the company has quickly expanded around the world, bringing its eReading services and technology to the United States, United Kingdom, the Netherlands, Australia, New Zealand, Hong Kong, Austria, Germany, France, recently Japan, and now Italy. The award-winning Kobo Touch™ eReader will be the first Kobo device to enter the Italian market and will be made available through 400 Mondadori stores as well as online for €99. Consumers can expect the devices to be in-store just in time for fall.
Kobo believes strongly in a Read Freely philosophy, and that people should have the ability to read on any device, unlike many other eBook solutions on the market. People can download free Kobo eReading apps to read across the most popular devices including desktops, laptops, tablets, AndroidÔ phones, iPhonesÒ, iPadsÒ, Blackberry® Smartphones and PlayBooks. Readers can also download their eBooks and read on a wide range of dedicated eReaders – such as the Kobo Touch eReader.
TOGETHER MONDADORI AND KOBO offer access to a huge selection of eBooks
Adding to Kobo’s 2.5-million eBooks, available in 60 languages, Kobo and Mondadori will offer popular eBooks in Italian – ranging from major international works, romance, bestsellers, and favorite local authors.
Readers can find and purchase from a catalogue of more than 4,000 eBooks from Edizioni Mondadori, Edizioni Piemme, Einaudi, Sperling & Kupfer, Electa, and Harlequin and other several publishing houses, with a total of over 30,000 eBooks in Italian.
The numerous titles available include the Fifty Shades of Grey trilogy by E. L. James, the Hunger Games trilogy by Suzanne Collins, Phantom by Jo Nesbø, Calico Joe by John Grisham, and best selling Italian fiction, such as Inseparabili by Alessandro Piperno (Strega book prize 2012), Léonie by Sveva Casati Modigliani and Il momento è delicato by Niccolò Ammaniti. Also available is the new line of short eBooks on wellness and self-help Sperling Tips, expressly developed for a digital reading.
THE KOBO TOUCH – At the affordable price of €99
Built by booklovers for booklovers, the award-winning Kobo Touch offers a best-in-class reading experience, with an amazing touch screen that uses Infrared Touch Technology, allowing readers to easily swipe or tap to turn pages. The Kobo Touch delivers an amazing eReading experience using infrared touch technology allowing readers to swipe or tap the screen to quickly turn pages. With Pearl eInk™ technology, reading on the new Kobo eReader is just like reading print on paper—and it is easy on the eyes, even in bright sunlight. A reading lover’s dream, Kobo Touch boasts storage of up to 30,000 books with expandable memory. The Kobo Touch eReader will be available for €99 both in-store and online.
ABOUT MONDADORI GROUP
The Mondadori Group is among the most important publishing companies in Europe and it is Italy’s biggest magazines and books publisher, through its publishing houses Edizioni Mondadori, Einaudi, Piemme, Sperling & Kupfer and Electa. Its wide-ranging production covers all market segments, including the ebook market. Mondadori operates also in the retail sector, with the largest network of stores in Italy. Mondadori Group also works in the book sector with two JVs with leading international subjects, such as Random House Mondadori and Harlequin Mondadori. As far as consumer magazines is concerned, Mondadori has strengthened its leadership by launching new titles and pursuing a policy of international expansion, which received further impetus with Mondadori France, the France’s third-largest magazine publisher with a portfolio of 28 titles, and two JVs in China and Russia. This expansion strategy has been supported by the introduction of Italian magazine brands on foreign markets through licensing agreements with international publishers, among which 20 editions of Grazia’s international network is the best example.
For more information, visit www.mondadorigroup.com
ABOUT KOBO, INC.
Kobo Inc. is one of the world’s fastest-growing eReading services offering more than 2.5 million eBooks, magazines and newspapers. Believing that consumers should have the freedom to read any book on any device, Kobo has built an open-standards platform to provide consumers with a choice when reading. Inspired by a “Read Freely” philosophy and a passion for innovation, Kobo has expanded to nearly 200 countries, where millions of consumers have access to localized eBook catalogues and award-winning eReaders, like the Kobo Touch. With top-ranked eReading applications for Apple, BlackBerry, Android, and Windows products, Kobo allows consumers to make eReading social through Facebook Timeline and Reading Life, an industry-first social experience that lets users earn awards for time spent reading and encouraging others to join in. Headquartered in Toronto and owned by Tokyo-based Rakuten, Kobo eReaders can be found in major retail chains across the globe.
For more information, visit www.kobo.com