Amazon buys Audible.com in $300 million cash deal

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Amazon lets consumers shop via text
Amazon lets consumers shop via text

Amazon.com has reached an agreement to acquire digital book provider Audible Inc. in a $300 million cash deal.

Under the terms of the agreement, Amazon.com will purchase all outstanding shares of Audible.com for $11.50 per share and will assume Audible.com's outstanding stock-based awards, for an aggregate transaction value of approximately $300 million. This includes Audible.com's cash and short-term investments at closing.

“Audible.com offers the best customer experience, the widest content selection and the broadest device compatibility in the industry,” said Drew Herdener, senior public relations manager at Amazon.com. “Together, we believe we can introduce more consumers to the benefits of the digital audiobook experience.”

This move comes after Amazon's move into the digital book space, with last fall's debut of the Amazon Kindle, an electronic book reading device.

Audible.com sells digital spoken word audio content, including digital audio editions of books, newspapers and magazines, television and radio programs. Its content offering includes more than 80,000 programs, including audiobooks from authors such as Stephen King and Jane Austen, and spoken word audio content from sources including The New York Times, The New Yorker and Charlie Rose. Audible.com will continue to function as an independent company under the continued leadership of Don Katz.

The acquisition is subject to customary closing conditions, including regulatory approvals, and is expected to close by the second quarter of 2008.

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