B&N, Microsoft team up on Nook, college businesses

Apr 30, 2012

(AP) -- Barnes & Noble Inc. and Microsoft Corp. are teaming up to create a new Barnes & Noble subsidiary that will house the digital and college businesses of the bookseller and include a Nook application for Windows 8.

The companies said Monday that they are exploring separating those businesses entirely. That could mean a stock offering, sale, or other deal could happen.

The partnership will Microsoft, will see the Redmond, Wash. company make a $300 million investment in the subsidiary for an approximately 17.6 percent stake. Barnes & Noble will own about 82.4 percent of the subsidiary, which has yet to be officially named.

The possibility of a separation of the businesses has been brewing recently. In March private investment firm G Asset Management, a Barnes & Noble shareholder, offered $460 million for a 51 percent stake in the company's college bookstore unit, Banes & Noble College Booksellers LLC.

In 2009, Barnes & Noble Inc. bought the college bookstore unit from Chairman Leonard Riggio in a deal worth $596 million. The deal ended up costing Barnes & Noble $460 million after accounting for the unit's cash on hand at the closing date.

Aside from the college business, Barnes & Noble is looking to maximize the potential of its e-book readers. The bookseller has tried to adjust to a noticeable shift in book reading habits, with e-book readers becoming increasingly popular with consumers over traditional hardcover or paperback books. But Barnes & Noble is dealing with tough competition on that end from the likes of Amazon.com Inc.'s Kindle and others.

"The formation of Newco and our relationship with are important parts of our strategy to capitalize on the rapid growth of the Nook business, and to solidify our position as a leader in the exploding market for digital content in the consumer and education segments," Barnes & Noble CEO William Lynch said in a statement.

The companies say the subsidiary will help to speed the transition to e-reading. Barnes & Noble sells the Nook e-book readers, which face stiff competition from a plethora of competitors, including Amazon.com Inc.'s Kindle.

The Nook app will make Barnes & Noble's catalog of e-books, magazines and newspapers available to Windows customers in the U.S. and abroad. The subsiary will also include Barnes & Noble's Nook Study software.

Barnes & Noble, based in New York, runs 691 bookstores in 50 states.

Microsoft's stock shed 12 cents to $31.86 in premarket trading.

Explore further: SR Labs research to expose BadUSB next week in Vegas

5 /5 (1 vote)
add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Barnes & Noble unveils $199 Nook Tablet

Feb 21, 2012

US bookseller Barnes & Noble unveiled a new version of its Nook tablet computer Tuesday, a device with the same $199 price tag as Amazon's Kindle Fire.

Barnes & Noble lights up e-reader screen

Apr 12, 2012

(AP) -- Barnes & Noble says it's tackling one of the shortcomings of black-and-white e-readers, by creating a screen that can be read in the dark.

Barnes & Noble adds apps to Nook e-reader

Apr 25, 2011

Barnes & Noble Inc. on Monday added an applications store and an email program to its Nook Color e-reader, bringing the $249 device closer to working like a tablet computer in the vein of the iPad.

Barnes & Noble cuts price for Nook

Jun 21, 2010

(AP) -- Barnes & Noble cut the price on its original Nook electronic reader, undercutting its chief competitor, Amazon.com's Kindle, and will also offer a lower-price Nook with a Wi-Fi connection.

Recommended for you

SR Labs research to expose BadUSB next week in Vegas

12 hours ago

A Berlin-based security research and consulting company will reveal how USB devices can do damage that can conduct two-way malice, from computer to USB or from USB to computer, and can survive traditional ...

3D TV may be the victim of negative preconceptions

21 hours ago

An academic from Newcastle University, UK, has led a lab-based research, involving 433 viewers of ages from 4 to 82 years, in which participants were asked to watch Toy Story in either 2D or 3D (S3D) and report on their viewing ...

Microsoft unveils Xbox in China as it faces probe

Jul 30, 2014

Microsoft on Wednesday unveiled its Xbox game console in China, the first to enter the market after an official ban 14 years ago, even as it faces a Chinese government probe over business practices.

A smart wristband for nocturnal cyclists

Jul 29, 2014

Five EPFL PhD students have developed a wristband that flashes when the rider reaches out to indicate a turn. Their invention was recognized at a European competition.

Lenovo's smart glasses prototype has battery at neck

Jul 28, 2014

China's PC giant Lenovo last week offered a peek at its Google Glass-competing smart glass prototype, further details of which are to be announced in October. Lenovo's glasses prototype is not an extreme ...

User comments : 0