Collins have also made other recent moves to expand their share of the book market. They recently closed a deal to add a group of former A&R franchisees to their network of franchise partners, and the final count should be around 70 stores. Collins also announced back in April that their franchisees will earn a percentage of the revenue of all online sales sold to customers within their assigned store territory. This is going to apply to both the books and ebooks sold online, as well as any eReader sold online.
Interesting. I'd been told by someone at Kobo a few weeks back that something would be happening in the AUS/NZ book market, and that I should stay tuned. So I guess this means that Kobo won't just be signing a single partner in some markets; now they will have Collins competing for the same ebook sales as Pearson, who recently bought the rights to the REDgroup website (including Kobo ebook sales).
There's no word yet on when the Kobo Touch will hit the shelves down in Australia.