Barnes & Noble’s Slipping Sales

Barnes & Noble‘s latest quarterly results are out, and they are less than spectacular. Net losses clocked in at $14.4 million, or $0.20 per share.

Also in the falling-figure category, sales were down 6.6 percent to $913.9 million, missing pre-earnings forecasts of $958 million by a notable amount. Same-store sales were down 6 percent — a big, big miss on the 0.4 percent analysts were calling for pre-release.

And according to the bookseller, things are not going to be getting a lot better anytime soon. B&N is predicting same-store sales will decline in the low single digits, “given the softer-than-expected sales results to date and the expected continuation of the challenging retail environment.”


This latest result comes as Barnes & Noble still struggles to find footing in a digital era. One of the first casualties of Amazon’s dominance, Barnes & Noble struggled with a digital eReader product that never quite took off (the Nook). There were some signs of improvement early in the year, with same-store sales peeking up a bit in January as the retailer beefed up its non-book offerings under CEO Ronald Boire.

But now, Boire is out — let go a month ago — and Barnes & Noble is struggling (though, interestingly, the areas Boire pushed are growing).

Barnes & Noble said it remains focused on executing its previously announced strategic initiatives to increase sales and reduce expenses. Executive Chairman Leonard Riggio has taken on Boire’s responsibilities until a new CEO is selected.


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