According to the announcement, Fatbrain.com’s Web-based services reach more than 3.5 million employee desktops at almost 350 Fortune 1000 companies worldwide. The company’s Information Exchange offering is a comprehensive, Web-based method to catalog, present, and distribute corporate materials, ranging from third-party published works such as books and training materials, to a company’s own publishable content. There are more than 500 individual Fatbrain.com co-branded online bookstores and information-resource centers, most of which are accessed via the sponsoring organization’s corporate intranet.
“We believe Fatbrain.com’s business-to-business focus, combined with its digital publishing and print-on-demand capabilities, complement barnesandnoble.com’s consumer-based initiatives in these areas,” said Steve Riggio, vice chairman of barnesandnoble.com. “Most important, we are impressed with the Fatbrain.com management team, whose talent and experience has distinguished them as leaders in the corporate bookselling marketplace.”
Fatbrain.com’s senior management, including its president and CEO, Dennis Capovilla, and executive vice president of product development, Kim Orumchian, will continue in their current positions, and the company will remain headquartered in Santa Clara, California.
With the acquisition, barnesandnoble.com will own approximately 50 percent of Mighty-Words (http://www.mightywords.com), a provider of digital content and formerly a subsidiary of Fatbrain.com. In June barnesandnoble.com invested approximately $20 million for a 30-percent equity stake in Mighty-Words. Fatbrain.com retained an equity stake of approximately 23 percent in MightyWords.
Fatbrain.com also announced an e-book alliance with netLibrary, Inc. (http://www.netlibrary.com). Fatbrain.com will add net-Library e-books to the solutions currently provided to its corporate customers. net-Library will host, manage, and distribute e-books to complement Web-based bookstores and information-management systems available through Fatbrain.com.
Separately, barnesandnoble.com announced a marketing agreement with Yahoo!. Under the alliance, barnesandnoble.com will be the premier bookseller featured throughout the Yahoo! directory (http://www.yahoo.com) and a featured merchant on Yahoo! Shopping. In addition, an in-store retail component of the agreement teams Barnes & Noble, Inc. and Yahoo! with Spinway, Inc. to develop a free, co-branded Internet service for Barnes & Noble retail customers. The service, which was expected to launch in October, will be promoted extensively in 551 Barnes & Noble stores across the country and will include the distribution of CDs to facilitate registrations.
Source: barnesandnoble.com, New York, 212/633-3300; http://www.bn.com.
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