Barnes & Noble sees Nook sales plunge
Revenue from the retailer's e-reader and e-books segment falls 61% from a year earlier to $125 million.
For the nine-week holiday period ending Dec. 28, the company's Nook segment reported a 61 percent decrease in revenue from a year earlier to $125 million, with device and accessories sales falling 67 percent to $88.7 million due to lower selling volume and lower average selling prices.
The company's retail segment, which consists of its namesake bookstores and BN.com, reported a 6.6 percent drop in revenue to $1.1 billion amid store closures and a 5.5% decline in same-store sales.
Meanwhile, core comparable bookstore sales, which excludes sales of Nook products, edged down 0.2 percent compared with the prior year.
"We are pleased with our holiday sales results, especially our core comparable bookstore sales, which were essentially flat and an improvement as compared to the first half of the year," said Chief Executive Michael P. Huseby, who was promoted to the post Wednesday.
He added Nook sales declined primarily because the previous holiday season included the introduction of two new tablet products, while no new tablets were introduced this year.
The struggling retailer in August abandoned any plans to split up the company. After considering the idea for 18 months, it said it had decided not to divide its retail stores from its Nook e-reader and e-books operation. Instead, it will focus on managing its current business. Additionally, Leonard Riggio, its chairman and largest shareholder, had declined against going forward with a personal offer to buy the company's roughly 675 consumer bookstores.
The decisions came soon after Barnes & Noble abruptly scaled back its costly pursuit of becoming a big player in the tablet computer market, saying it would stop manufacturing the devices.
That announcement was followed by the resignation of Chief Executive William Lynch, who was instrumental in Barnes & Noble's push to compete in tablets against Apple (AAPL) and Amazon.com (AMZN). Huseby was named to succeed him about six months later.
Barnes & Noble in November reported fiscal second-quarter profit jumped as the company cut costs, masking a bigger-than-expected decline in revenue.
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The solid report comes a month after the retailer closed all of its Canadian operations.
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