Amazon.com is taking a 5% stake in Audible, a company that provides spoken-audio programming. As part of the deal, Audible will pay Amazon $30 million over three years to be the exclusive provider of audio content that is either streamed or downloaded through Amazon. The content can be replayed on PCs or on portable audio devices. The investment announcement comes less than a week after Amazon laid off 150 workers, or 2% of its workforce. An Amazon spokesman said the layoffs were part of a re-evaluation process and would not effect the company's continued growth.
Copyright January 2000, Crain Communications Inc.