Barnes and Noble Announces Holiday Revenues Were Down Due to Slowing Nook Sales

Posted on January 9, 2014

Barnes & Noble reported holiday sales today for the period which ended December 28, 2013. During the nine week period revenue from the retail segment, which includes sales from bn.com and retail bookstores, was down 6.6% from last year. It reported $1.1 billion of revenue. The company attributed the decrease to store closures and a 5.5% decrease in comparable sales from last year. When you factor out the dismal performance of the Nook and related products, the decrease from last year narrows to 0.2%.

The Nook continues to be a drag on earnings. The Nook ereader devices, digital content and accessories showed revenue of $125 million, which is 60.5% less than comparable sales from last year. People are buying fewer Nook readers and prices for ebooks have fallen.

The company just got a new CEO, Michael Huseby. It has been without a CEO since last summer. Huseby had this to say about the results: "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. During the holiday period we benefitted from a strong line-up of bestselling titles, great execution by our booksellers and merchants, an effective advertising campaign and strong increases in our Juvenile, Gift and Toys & Games categories."

Huseby said he's pretty happy with the results, because the company did not introduce a new Nook product this holiday season, where as last year the company introduced two new tablets. He said that the company executed its plan to sell through the existing devices.