Closing the Books on Barnes & Noble

Issue 09-11-17   |   Reviewer:   Thomas Coe


Along with other retail chains, bookseller Barnes & Noble Inc. is feeling the pressure from Inc. and their growing dominance of online and of the overall retail market. The same-store sales decline of Barnes & Noble reflects the shifting pattern of consumer shopping patterns away from malls and shopping centers and more toward online retailing. Competition from Amazon was a determinant in Books-a-Million going private and forced the liquidation of Borders and its Walden Books stores.

Despite the effects of competition, Barnes & Noble does offer a potential buyer some attractive features. It has a strong brand, an attractive balance sheet, and the ability to generate profits with cost-cutting measures. Its founder, Leonard Riggio, is the company’s largest shareholder. He may be willing to find a buyer to protect the store’s legacy in the face of the downturn of traditional retailers.

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