Walmart takes aim at another of Amazon’s core businesses in e-book push, but it might already be too late

A Kobo e-reader. Walmart is making a belated push into the digital book market, teaming up with Rakuten, which owns Kobo, to sell e-books and audiobooks.Kiyoshi Ota/Bloomberg

Walmart is making a circuitous and belated push into the digital book market, teaming up with a Japanese company to sell e-books and audiobooks.

The deal with Rakuten, an e-commerce giant based in Japan, will allow Walmart to start selling digital books on its website for the first time later this year.

The move, which was announced late Thursday, comes years after Walmart’s archrival, Amazon, began to dominate the market for digital readers.

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