April 30, 2012

Barnes & Noble, Microsoft ink $300M deal on e-reading | Microsoft - CNET News

First, Microsoft made a big investment in a failing Nokia in order to create a hardware platform for its new Windows mobile operating system. Now, $300 Million invested in the Nook business of a shaky Barnes and Noble, while its book business flounders in the wake of ebooks and digital content. All this to fuel an ecosystem for Windows 8. This new operating system/content consumption platform is Microsoft's big bet to counter Apple, Google and Amazon. Microsoft needs a hardware and content play in order to be competitive.

The next shoe to drop may well be some advanced hardware from Google via its recent purchase of Motorola. I presume that Microsoft has acquired or is obtaining the licensing it needs for video form Hollwood.

With these four titans rumbling in the digital forest, the battle will be huge and all the competition will be good for consumers. The days of dead-tree books are inevitably winding down
 "The companies announced today that Microsoft has invested $300 million into a new Barnes & Noble subsidiary, known as Newco until the company can come up with a name. The $300 million investment will give Microsoft a 17.6 percent equity stake in the firm. Barnes and Noble, which assumed a $1.7 billion valuation on the subsidiary, will retain 82.4 percent ownership."
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