Barnes and Noble has purchased independent ebook retailer Fictionwise for $15.7 million, plus performance incentives.
Fictionwise, which operates the Fictionwise.com and eReader.com Web sites, was founded in 2000 by Steve and Scott Pendergast, who will continue to head the company B&N said it will operate as a separate business unit based in New Jersey. B&N added, however, that Fictionwise is part of its overall digital strategy, which includes launching an e-bookstore later this year. Last month, PW reported that B&N had plans to open an e-bookstore sometime in March; the company had no comment at the time.
The Pendergasts said on the Fictionwise.com website that they sold the company
to Barnes and Noble because they shared the same vision of the future of the ebook business.