The audiobook publisher RBmedia, sold in September by soon-to-be Simon & Schuster owner KKR to fellow private equity firms Francisco Partners and H.I.G. Capital, in a deal reportedly valued at $1 billion, declared that 2023 was “another year of record-breaking growth.” While the company didn’t provide details on sales, it did point to the double-digit gains being posted by the digital audiobook industry.

“We’re fortunate to have many things in place that contribute to our ongoing success—fantastic strategic partners and partnerships, thoughtful content acquisitions, smart thinking from a highly capable team, and our long-standing commitment to the highest quality audiobook production for our authors and their listeners,” the company's chief content officer, Troy Juliar, said in a statement. “In 2024 we plan to continue to grow the size and distribution of our audiobook catalog, while continuing to expand into new markets globally.”

An RBmedia spokesperson said that the transition to new ownership has been “seamless,” with the firms continuing to back the company’s growth initiatives. The company added that its audiobook catalog now stands at more than 70,000 titles, up from 66,000 at the time of its sale last year

The company has taken several steps to grow its catalog over the past several months, the spokesperson said, including the inking of exclusive audiobook partnerships with Sourcebooks and Abrams. It has also signed agreements with a number of well-known authors, including Craig Johnson, Jeff Kinney, Jayne Krentz, Sarah J. Maas, Scarlett St. Clair, Emily Rath, and Rebecca Yarros.

The agreement with Yarros enabled RBmedia to release the audiobook edition of her blockbuster, Fourth Wing, across multiple languages and formats. Among its other popular audiobooks released last year were Abraham Verghese’s The Covenant of Water; Patrick Rothfuss’s The Narrow Road Between Desires, a new Kingkiller Chronicle novella; three original Hellboy Universe audiobooks, replete with a full cast of actors, sound effects, and music; and Erasure by Percival Everett, which was recently adapted for the silver screen as the film American Fiction. Last year also saw RBmedia join the list of publishers who have teamed with Spotify to support its entrance into the U.S. market, signing an agreement to provide instant access to RBmedia audiobooks as part of Spotify’s premium subscription.

In addition, RBmedia’s international business also “experienced record growth,” said the spokesperson. During the year, it signed new partnerships with independent publishers Unbound and Verve Books, and increased its presence in the Spanish-language market, while signing new agreements with for more French-language titles. More global expansion is one of RBmedia’s 2024 priorities, the spokesperson added.

This article has been updated with further information