Amazon has just announced that it's acquiring Comixology, the highly successful digital comics platform. "We've long admired the passion Comixology brings to changing the way we buy and read comics and graphic novels," said Amazon VP of content acquisition and digital publishing David Naggar. "We look forward to investing in the business, growing the team, and together, bringing comics and graphic novels to even more readers." Comixology operates both a comics store and a mobile comics app, which was the top-grossing non-game iPad app last year. It also opened a self-publishing platform in 2013, a tactic Amazon has used extensively on its Kindle platform.

Amazon has played with comics before, offering storyboards for potential films as rough comic series to gauge interest. It's already possible to buy graphic novels for the Kindle. But this marks a major move into the space — Comixology has managed to make deals with a broad swathe of comics publishers, including Marvel and DC. The purchase also follows Amazon's acquisition of Double Helix Games earlier this year, not long before the announcement of the Fire TV set-top box. It's not clear yet exactly what Amazon plans to do with Comixology, which says its mission will continue to be spreading "the love of comics and graphic novels in all forms." A Comixology spokesperson confirmed that its brand and apps aren't going away in the foreseeable future, saying that the companies would likely find ways to make Comixology and Kindle work better together. Terms and conditions have not been announced, although the companies say they hope to complete the acquisition in the second quarter of 2014.

Update April 10th, 2014 4:55pm: Added comment from Comixology spokesperson.