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Barnes & Noble Buyout: Chairman Considering Buying Chain, but not Nook


Epoch Times Staff
Created: February 25, 2013 Last Updated: February 27, 2013
Related articles: Business » Companies
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Barnes & Noble buyout: Leonard Riggio, the chairman of retailer Barnes & Noble, is looking to purchase the chain. However, it was reported that he won’t buy out the Nook subsidiary.

A pedestrian walks by a Barnes and Noble bookstore on Jan. 28, 2013 in Corte Madera, California. (Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)

A pedestrian walks by a Barnes and Noble bookstore on Jan. 28, 2013 in Corte Madera, California. (Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)

The chairman of bookseller Barnes & Noble, Leonard Riggio, is considering a buyout of the a chain, but it was reported that he is not interested in purchasing Nook Media LLC, the company’s e-reader and tablet subsidiary.

Riggio made a regulatory filing on Monday, showing that he is looking to buy the Barnes & Noble bookstores and website, reported the Wall Street Journal. Riggio, who owns around 30 percent of the company, will negotiate with the company’s board to pay for the deal with cash and with debt.

The move comes after Barnes & Noble had a lackluster Christmas season, posting an 11 percent decline in retail sales, while Nook sales fell 12.6 percent, reported CNN Money.

Riggio, 71, steered Barnes & Noble into becoming a massive retail bookseller in the 1980s and 1990s, but in recent years, the overally bookstore business has gone downhill. Consumers have relied more on tablets, e-readers, smartphones, and buying print books online rather than purchasing hardcopy books.

In 2001, Barnes & Noble’s market capitalization was at around $2.2 billion, but currently, it’s at around $809 million, the Journal said.

If Riggio chooses to buy the bookstores, it might split Barnes & Noble into two companies: the chain and the Nook e-reader business, reported the Journal.

The New York Times reported that the firm is looking to reconsider its entire digital strategy. “They are not completely getting out of the hardware business, but they are going to lean a lot more on the comprehensive digital catalog of content,” a source familiar with Barnes & Noble’s strategy told the Times on condition of anonymity.

Barnes & Noble is slated to report its fiscal third-quarter earnings on Feb. 28.

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