Barnes And Noble Starts A New Chapter: Could A Sale Be In The Future?

Bookseller Barnes and Noble are contemplating the sale of its business after years of revenue declines and ailing stocks.

On October 3, the company revealed that it might look to make a deal with potential buyers. Despite its reputation as America’s oldest and top bookseller, internet sales through Amazon and other buyers have resulted in the company’s steady decline since 2006.

After their announcement, however, shares for the company rose by nearly 22%.

The NASDAQ reports that this is a good sign; it means that investors remain hopeful for the future of the brick and mortar store.

Leonard Riggio, founder and executive chairman for Barnes and Noble, might be one of the buyers. Riggio owns around 15% of the company’s stock while his non-profit Riggio Foundation owns an additional 4.3% of shares.

Back in July, the company had lost nearly $17 million. Though there is no claim for Chapter 7 bankruptcy from the company, the steady decline in sales doesn’t sound good for the hundreds of stores scattered across the nation. If bankruptcy were reported, the process would take around six months.

So far, there’s no guarantee a transaction will assuredly happen for the bookseller. Barnes and Noble has claimed that multiple parties have expressed interest along with Riggio.

Craig Johnson, the president of Customer Growth Partners has commended Barnes and Noble’s tenacity despite sinking sales and a push to online shopping.

“If they can pull something out to save the company that would be great, but they have a real uphill climb. They’ve hung in there despite Amazon and all the rest of it. But the bookstore that solely sells books and periodicals is unfortunately a relic of the past,” he noted in an interview.

In order to compete with online sales, Barnes and Noble released their Nook and even bought a partnership with Microsoft to develop its e-reader back in 2014. Johnson claims any potential buyers will have to work hard to keep market interest.

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