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Kobo Closes Funding Round

Kobo Inc. announced that it has closed its latest investment round, which the company says will fund its expansion into the international market for eReaders and eBooks.

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Unedited press release follows:

Kobo Closes Series C Investment Round

Now with over 2.7 Million Users Worldwide, Kobo Focuses on Rapid Growth and Industry Leading Innovation

TORONTO–Kobo, a global eReading service built on open standards, today confirmed the closing of its Series C investment round, led by a major institutional investor. Indigo Books & Music Inc., Kobo’s founding shareholder, invested in this round and maintains majority ownership.

The new funding will support Kobo’s growth in the multibillion dollar global eReading market through continued product innovation in the eReading experience and international expansion with new distribution partners, support for a wide range of languages and the world’s best content.

Highlights from Kobo’s first 14 months:

* 2.3 Million eBooks – Kobo has built one of the largest eReading catalogues in the world

* 2.7 Million Users – Kobo’s base is growing rapidly: 10 months to 1 million, less than 90 days to 2 million

* Customers from over 100 Countries buy from Kobo every week

* Hundreds of thousands of eBooks downloaded per day during peak holiday periods

* With leading OEMs including Samsung, Research In Motion and HTC choosing Kobo as their global eReading platform, over 20 Million Kobo-ready devices will be in market in 2011

* The Kobo eReader is available at thousands of retail outlets including Walmart (US & Canada), Borders (US), Indigo (Canada), Best Buy (Canada), Angus & Robertsons (AU), Whitcoull’s (NZ), WHSMITH (UK), Swindon (Hong Kong)

* Kobo led the industry with many firsts – first on Android, first on Playbook, first to launch eBook gifting and first to launch a comprehensive social experience for eReading

“In 2010, we learned that an open platform and the ability to read on any device enabled a massive population of readers to easily get started with eBooks. Pioneering this open approach, Kobo has quickly become the partner of choice for retailers, operators, and tablet OEMs,” said Michael Serbinis, CEO of Kobo. “With a foundation firmly in place, in 2011 we will accelerate our focus on creating the best eReading experience for customers, and expanding internationally with new partners, content and languages.”

eReading is Going Social
Kobo’s recently-announced and innovative Kobo Reading Life, a core part of the Kobo experience now available on the iPad and the iPhone, marked the industry’s first comprehensive social eReading experience. Nearly all of Kobo’s iPad and iPhone users have started using Reading Life and to date, over 1 million achievements have been awarded to loyal readers everywhere. Kobo has seen a dramatic increase in users’ reading time and overall engagement since the launch in December. Kobo plans to roll out new innovative features for Reading Life, and bring the program to new partners, platforms, and languages throughout 2011.

About Kobo, Inc.
Kobo is a global eReading service with more than 2.3 million eBooks, magazines and newspapers – one of the largest eReading catalogues in the world. Kobo believes consumers should have the freedom to read any book on any device and has attracted millions of readers from over 100 countries across the globe. Kobo has top ranked eReading applications for iPad, iPhone, Blackberry, Android, Palm WebOS, Windows, MacOS and is the eReading application of choice for leading tablet OEMs. The Kobo eReader is also available at leading retailers including Indigo, Walmart, Best Buy, Borders, WHSmith, Angus & Robertson’s, and Whitcoull’s. For more information visit