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Amazon.com announces its plans to buyout Audible.com for large sum

Amazon.com, Inc. announced on Wednesday that it reached an agreement with Audible, Inc. to buy out the digital spoken word business.  The purchase will cost Amazon.com about $11.50 per share, totaling roughly $300 million. This will include Audible’s cash and short-term investments at closing.

Audible.com offers a massive range of audio books from top authors, as well as a library of newspapers, magazines, television and radio programs, and original programming.  The website hosts over 80,000 programs throughout the U.S., U.K., Germany and France.  Some of the major authors and sources include, Stephen King, Thomas Friedman, The New York Times, The New Yorker, and Charlie Rose.

"This deal brings together two pioneering companies that share a long history of ceaseless focus on improving the customer experience," said Donald Katz, founder and chief executive of Audible.com. "We are very excited to be joining a company as innovative as Amazon.com."

It looks like Amazon is focusing on the digital music market with this purchase, and its recent move to take its DRM-free digital music download service international. 

The acquisition is expected to close by the second quarter of 2008.





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