Market value of Egypt's self-publishing platform Kotobna rises to US$3M after Autograph acquisition

Egypt's self-publishing platform Kotobna disclosed its new acquisition deal on 40% of Autograph, an online store for bestselling book merchandise; to raise its market value to 3 million USD.

According to EPIC Advisory, a business, financial, and investment firm based in Cairo, the valuation is based on recent sustainable growth after introducing print-on-demand technology to the listed books on the platform, in addition to an increase of e-books that first published on Kotobna.

Mohammad Gamal, Founder and CEO of Kotobna said: "The company has witnessed a steady Y/o/Y growth during the last three years by 70 % and a growth in the Gulf clients by 50%." The platform has published more than 1000 e-books, has sold 50,000 e-books, and printed 800 books through its print-on-demand feature, according to the founder.

Launched in 2016, Autograph started selling gifts and stationery products inspired by famous characters in world best-sellers such as Game of Thrones, Harry Potter, and Marvel. Mohammed Gama stated, “We want to help our listed authors in Egypt and the Gulf rebrand their work by converting their heroes into interesting stationery items and giveaways, thus creating a stronger bond between readers and their favourite characters."

Gamal, who is a writer himself and an electronic engineering graduate added, “It is time to diversify our products and help our authors rebrand themselves.”

In 2017, O2 Media group invested USD500,000 in Kotobna. 

In 2015, Kotobna won the MIT Enterprise Forum Arab Startup Competition for its democratisation of the publishing process. They simplify the publishing process for Arab authors as they can directly upload their work onto the app and platform. Readers have access to a large selection of e-books and can request printed copies to be delivered to them.

2019 was a productive year for EdTech in MENA, as the industry witnessed more deals (29) and total funding ($20M) than any previous year. Access more data and trends in our new 2019 MENA Education Venture Investment Report.