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Rakuten Kobo Appoints Pieter Swinkels as Chief Content Officer

January 30, 2019

Mandate includes building Kobo Originals and exclusive content

TORONTO, ON (January 30, 2019) – Rakuten Kobo, a global leader in digital reading, today announced the appointment of Pieter Swinkels to the role of Chief Content Officer. Reporting to CEO Michael Tamblyn, Swinkels is responsible for the growth of Kobo’s worldwide content catalog and driving business relationships with publishers, agents and authors. In addition, his responsibilities include expanding the Kobo Writing Life self-publishing platform, expanding the Kobo Plus subscriptions service, and continuing to build out the Kobo Originals program of new and exclusive eBooks, audiobooks and podcast content.

Swinkels formerly held the role of Executive Vice President of Publisher Relations and Content.

Prior to joining Rakuten Kobo in 2011, Swinkels worked in the international publishing industry, most notably as Publisher at De Bezige Bij in Amsterdam.

“Pieter knows publishing from the inside out, has tremendous respect for authors and the work that they do and has been able to take that insight to innovate in how we engage with and build new businesses that readers find compelling,” said Michael Tamblyn, CEO, Rakuten Kobo. “Everything we do starts with great books and he has been instrumental in making sure we are always able to put the very best in front of our readers no matter what their interest.”

Rakuten Kobo’s executive team also comprises:

  • Alan MacNevin, formerly Chief Marketing Officer, has been appointed to Chief Operating Officer, overseeing the company’s day-to-day operations.

  • Marianne Hamilton, newly appointed to Chief Marketing Officer, responsible for the customer journey, from acquisition to marketing to sales.

  • Dave Anderson, formerly Executive Vice President of Content Sales, has been appointed to Chief Strategy Officer, overseeing corporate development, big data, and the global supply chain operation.

  • Trevor Hunter continues in his role as Chief Technology Officer, responsible for hardware and software innovation.

  • Philip Cheng continues as Chief Financial Officer, responsible for the company’s financial health as well as balancing publisher and retailer accounts.


About Rakuten Kobo Inc.

Owned by Tokyo-based Rakuten and headquartered in Toronto, Rakuten Kobo Inc. is one of the world’s most innovative eReading services offering more than 6 million eBooks and audiobooks to millions of customers in 190 countries. Believing that consumers should have the freedom to read any book on any device, Kobo provides people with a choice when reading. Kobo offers an eReader for everyone with a wide variety of E Ink eReaders to suit any Reader’s style including the Kobo Clara HD, Kobo Aura, Kobo Aura H2O, Kobo Aura ONE and Kobo Forma; along with the company’s free top-ranking eReading and audiobook listening app for iOS® and Android®. Kobo’s award-winning eReaders can be found in major retail chains around the world. For more information, visit

Media Contact
René d’Entremont
Rakuten Kobo Inc.
Director, Public Relations

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