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Microsoft To Invest $300 Million In Barnes & Noble's Nook

Today saw Microsoft announce the company's alliance with Barnes & Noble, forming a project it hopes will "accelerate the transition to e-reading, which is revolutionizing the way people consume, create, share and enjoy digital content."

Investing $300 million in Newco, a new subsidiary comprising the amalgamation of Nook's digital book and college businesses, this investment will give Microsoft a 17.6 per cent share - valued at an incredible $1.7 billion.

"Microsoft's investment in [the new subsidiary], and our exciting collaboration to bring world-class digital reading technologies and content to the Windows platform ... will allow us to significantly expand the business," said Barnes & Noble Chief Executive, William Lynch.

It looks as though the venture will help bring the former foes to a peaceful (and profitable) treaty, as both companies decided to drop patent lawsuits against each other. By forming a partnership, Barnes & Noble and Newco will have a royalty-bearing licence under Microsoft's patents for its Nook eReader and Tablet devices.

"The shift to digital is putting the world's libraries and newsstands in the palm of every person's hand, and is the beginning of a journey that will impact how people read, interact with, and enjoy new forms of content," explained Microsoft President Andy Lees.

Another great outcome to this deal will also be the development of a Nook application to be released on Windows 8, opening the doors of the digital bookstore to an international audience.

Source: SlashGear (opens in new tab)

Mariel Norton is a self-confessed girly geek with a penchant for technology, and previously wrote for ITProPortal, with experience on TheNextWeb, UKFast, WorldRemit, Virgin Media, Google, and more.