Barnes & Noble May Sell Itself
It's in dire straits amid digital revolution
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Aug 3, 2010 6:17 PM CDT
A file photo of a Barnes & Noble in Bethel Park, Pa.   (AP Photo/Gene J. Puskar)

(Newser) – Book retailer Barnes & Noble said its shares have slumped so low it may put itself on the block—possibly selling the chain to an investment group that would include its founder and biggest shareholder, Leonard Riggio. The world's largest bookseller said late today that its board is evaluating several options to boost shareholder value in the face of a depressed stock price, including selling the company. Riggio holds some 28% of the company's shares.

B&N shares soared on the news in after-hours trading, rising $3.31, or nearly 26%, to $16.15. Barnes & Noble has been hurting, along with other book retailers, as people focus on essentials in the down economy and limit their book purchases. Shoppers also are shifting away from paper books toward electronic books, much as they have done with music, moving away from CDs toward digital downloads.

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Showing 3 of 17 comments
Aug 4, 2010 9:01 AM CDT
This makes me sad. I know that ebooks make more sense, but there's a nostalgia to holding a book, seeing its cover every time you pick it back up and gripping the binding tighter when the story's twists start to get to you. It's almost a spiritual experience, and I just don't get that reading off of a screen.
Aug 3, 2010 7:59 PM CDT
Every time I go to B&N or Borders people are sitting around on the floor reading books and doing homework. Not buying books. It's a bookstore, people, not a library.
Aug 3, 2010 6:37 PM CDT
I love going to B&N. That would suck if they went away.