The computer giant have teamed up with Barnes and Noble to try to make a bigger mark in the booming digital book market. Microsoft will invest $300 million for an 18% stake in a new unit that will combine Barnes & Noble’s Nook digital reader and college businesses. It is believed that a spin off from this deal will see The Nook becoming an AP integrated into Windows 8.
The deal, which gives Microsoft a 17.6 percent stake, values the Nook
unit at $1.7 billion — roughly double Barnes & Noble’s entire
market value as of last Friday — and bolsters the bookseller’s efforts
to make its digital business the linchpin of its future growth. The
announcement was the latest surprise in an unpredictable and rapidly
shifting e-book market, which is crowded with technology giants trying
to chip away at Amazon's dominance. Amazon once had close to 90 percent of the e-book market, but since then, a handful of players, including Apple, Google and now Microsoft, have edged in.