Michael Kuhn’s AudioGo Limited acquires 85% shareholding.

BBC Worldwide has completed the sale of an 85% shareholding in BBC Audiobooks (including BBC Audiobooks America) to AudioGo Limited, which is chaired by film producer Michael Kuhn.

BBC Worldwide retains its 15% stake.

The audiobooks division, the leading audio publisher in the UK, was set up in 2001.

John Smith, CEO of BBC Worldwide, said “I’m pleased to announce the successful conclusion of the sale process we initiated last year.  BBC Worldwide will remain a shareholder in the business, and looks forward to participating in its future success.  Sale proceeds will be reinvested in our international businesses, supporting future returns to the BBC, and therefore benefiting the licence fee payer.”

Paul Dempsey, Managing Director of BBC Worldwide’s Home Entertainment division, said: “The partnership with AudioGo Limited, announced today, will enable BBC Audiobooks to develop its catalogue and services under new ownership.  This agreement mirrors the successful publishing joint ventures we have put in place for our books businesses.”

Michael Kuhn, Chairman of AudioGo Limited said: “The partners in AudioGo Ltd are committed to building on the past achievements of BBC Audiobooks as it enters the digital age. Opportunities are many and exciting and we will immediately get to it with Managing Director Mike Bowen and his team, andin partnership with BBC Worldwide, to create new offerings to our customers worldwide.”