Kobo, the Toronto-based e-reading company, has issued an official statement to clarify its position vis-à-vis the recent announcement that the U.S. bookstore chain Borders would be entering liquidation. The statement is in response to “misconceptions about Kobo that have been inaccurately reported by the media and misunderstood by consumers.”
The Borders liquidation is of particular concern to Kobo, since the bookstore chain was an early investor in the e-reading company, with an 11 per cent stake. According to the statement issued today yesterday, “Borders shares are subject to the terms of the Kobo shareholders’ agreement which, among other things, restricts their transfer or disposition.” On Monday, Bloomberg reported that Kobo was one of several creditors to file objections to Borders’ liquidation process in U.S. bankruptcy court.
Where customer service is concerned, Kobo asserts that for some time it has been working to transition Borders’ customers’ e-book accounts to Kobo and will continue to do so.
The Kobo statement quotes CEO Michael Serbinis:
Borders has a minority stake in our company and serves as part of our distribution in the U.S. along with Walmart, Best Buy, Sears, and other leading retailers. As a member of the broader book publishing and retailing community, we are watching Borders’ story and will offer our support to Borders and their employees. Kobo will continue to serve Borders customers – in this time of transition as well as moving forward – to provide the ultimate eReading experience and one of the widest selection of eBooks available to the eReading community worldwide.