News

AudioGO acquires US rival Blackstone Audio

Bath-based AudioGO has bought US audiobook publisher Blackstone Audio from founders Craig and Michelle Black. The sum paid was undisclosed.

Blackstone Audio is based in Ashland, Oregon, and has a catalogue of nearly 5,000 titles including books by Ayn Rand, C S Lewis and William Landay.

AudioGO c.e.o. Mike Bowen will serve as c.e.o. of the combined Group. Josh Stanton will continue as president of Blackstone Audio and become c.e.o. of the North America operations. Craig Black has been appointed to the Group's board of directors and he and Michelle Black will remain as consultants to the Group.

Michael Kuhn remains non-executive chairman, now of the combined Group.

Kuhn said of Blackstone Audio: "Its reputation for quality audio recordings is unmatched and under Josh Stanton they have pioneered innovative digital initiatives with its new 'Downpour.com' website. Together we look forward to providing an exceptional offering to audiobook customers worldwide."

The acquisition was supported by Alcuin Capital, which also backed the private investors who acquired AudioGO from BBC Worldwide in 2010. Alcuin Capital's co-founder Mark Storey said: "Our confidence in AudioGO has encouraged us to support this significant expansion of its operations and we are excited by the growth prospects afforded by the combination with the exciting team and resources at Blackstone."