PE-owned Recorded Books completes Tantor Media acquisition

Recorded Books, which is owned by Wasserstein & Co., has closed its buy of Tantor Media, an audiobook publisher based in Old Saybrook, Conn. No financial terms were disclosed. Carter Morse & Mathias provided financial advice to Tantor on the transaction.


PRINCE FREDERICK, Md. & OLD SAYBROOK, Conn.–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Recorded Books Inc., a leading provider of unabridged audiobooks and digital content to the library, school, and retail markets, announced today that it is has completed its acquisition of audiobook publisher Tantor Media, Inc. Terms of the transaction were not disclosed. Tantor marks the second acquisition for Recorded Books in 2014, following its acquisition of HighBridge Company in April. Recorded Books now boasts a catalog of over 22,000 unabridged audiobooks, making it one of the industry’s largest. Wasserstein & Co., LP acquired Recorded Books in early 2014.

Located in Old Saybrook, CT, Tantor is a fast growing independent audiobook publisher, producing approximately 100 titles every month. The company utilizes proprietary selection methods to identify today’s most sought after titles and produces them through a network of leading professional narrators. Tantor’s extensive catalog of approximately 5,000 titles includes Man Booker, Pulitzer, and National Book Award winners, as well as countless New York Times bestsellers.

“This is an important day for Recorded Books, and a terrific opportunity to acquire a highly-complementary business,” said Recorded Books president and CEO, Rich Freese. “Tantor’s long-standing relationships with leading publishers and authors has driven its strong growth and built one of the industry’s leading catalogs of audiobooks. By utilizing and further developing Tantor’s proprietary recording capabilities, Recorded Books will be able to increase both our publishing speed and volume – all while growing the breadth of our audiobook catalog enjoyed by our customers around the world. As the publishing industry continues to embrace a shift towards digital and the growth in audio content, Recorded Books’ catalog of audiobooks and digital capabilities will be even better positioned to capitalize on that demand. We look forward to building on our past year’s success in 2015.”

“Since 2000, Tantor has strived to partner with leading authors around the world and deliver their content in new and exciting ways,” said Tantor co-founder and CEO, Kevin Colebank. “The combination creates an exciting opportunity to accelerate our growth, enhance our capabilities and gain access to greater resources, as Tantor becomes part of a widely-respected international organization.” Tantor co-founder, Laura Colebank added, “We have long respected Recorded Books’ deep industry relationships, impressive catalog, and innovative technology platforms. The addition of Tantor better positions Recorded Books to continue to be a great partner with authors, publishers, agents, and customers.”

Recorded Books, headquartered in Prince Frederick, MD, will continue to operate Tantor out of its current Old Saybrook, CT facility.

Jones Day served as legal advisor to Recorded Books. Carter Morse & Mathias served as the financial advisor to Tantor and Robinson & Cole served as its legal advisor.

About Recorded Books
Recorded Books is the largest independent publisher of unabridged audiobooks and provider of digital content to the library, school, and retail markets. The company owns an exclusive catalog of over 17,000 audiobook titles narrated by professional, award-winning actors. Recorded Books provides digital audiobooks and eBooks to libraries through its proprietary OneClickdigital platform, as well as electronic resources, including digital magazines and films, through its proprietary RBdigital Gateway platform. The company operates in the United Kingdom through its W.F. Howes subsidiary and in Australia through its Wavesound subsidiary. Recorded Books was founded in 1979 and is headquartered in Prince Frederick, MD. For more information, visit

About Tantor Media
Tantor Media, Inc., is a leading independent publisher of approximately 5,000 unabridged audiobooks, including New York Times bestsellers, Pulizter and Man Booker awards, recorded by critically acclaimed narrators. Tantor is the recipient of multiple Audies Awards, AudioFile Magazine Earphones Awards and Publishers Weekly and Library Journal starred audio reviews. Tantor combines a proprietary title selection processes with innovative audiobook production software and systems to publish 100 titles per month. Tantor titles are available through all major retailers, distributors and on Tantor is a full service publisher including audiobooks, print and ebooks. Tantor Studios provides audiobook production services. Founded in 2000, Tantor is headquartered in Old Saybrook, CT.

About Wasserstein & Co.
Wasserstein & Co. is a leading independent private equity and investment firm, focused primarily on leveraged buyout investments and related investment activities. Wasserstein & Co. manages capital on behalf of institutional and individual investors. The firm is focused on investments primarily in the media and communications, consumer products, and water and industrial sectors. Wasserstein & Co. has offices in New York and Los Angeles. For more information, visit