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Posts Tagged ‘Steve Riggio’

“Strong” Nook Sales Boost Barnes & Noble

features_wifinook.pngToday Barnes & Noble reported that total sales for the third quarter had risen to $2.2 billion, 33 percent above the same period last year.

Launching the Nook eReader last quarter, Barnes & Noble.com reported that sales increased 32 percent to $210 million over that time period, recording a 67 percent “year-over-year for the month of January.” However, during the third quarter, Barnes & Noble store sales fell 4.7 percent to $1.4 billion.

CEO Steve Riggio had this statement: “nook began shipping only in the middle of the third quarter, and, as evident in our sales, we are thrilled with how customers have embraced our product and our digital eBook platform … In addition to the accelerating online sales trends, nook sales have been strong at our bookstores since the product became available earlier this month.”

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Barnes & Noble, Inc. to Offer Free Wi-Fi in Stores

barnes-noble-logo1.jpgTeaming up with AT&T, Barnes & Noble, Inc. will install free wi-fi at the company’s 777 bookstores around the country.

In the release, the company stressed that wi-fi hookup will allow shoppers to download titles from the company’s newly created digital library of 700,000 e-book titles. In a sci-fi twist, customers can choose to receive “personalized messages” from the bookseller via their wireless device whenever they enter the bookstore–receiving coupons, author appearance news, and other information.

Barnes & Noble CEO Steve Riggio described the initiative: “Barnes & Noble pioneered the concept of retail stores as community centers … By providing no-fee Wi-Fi access, we are not only meeting our customers’ needs, but extending the sense of community that has always been in our stores.” (Via Publishers Lunch)

B&N To Release Exclusive Music CDs

Barnes & Noble, in conjunction with bigHelium Records, announced the launch of its exclusive new CD collection, SundayMusic (R), “designed to introduce sophisticated adults to sophisticated music from unique artists that might otherwise go undiscovered.” The first two albums of the series features artists including Norah Jones, Jeff Buckley, Sara Tavares and Jacob Golden. Steve Riggio, chief executive officer of Barnes & Noble, said, “Though embracing many genres and styles, the SundayMusic (R) compilations have one consistent voice, carried by some of the best singers and writers in the world, comprising the perfect soundtrack for a quiet day.”

The Next, Still Pessimistic Chapter for E-Books

The New York Times’ Brad Stone doesn’t really add much more about the next generation e-book readers like Amazon Kindle and the Sony Reader, but since people reading the NYT aren’t necessarily reading GalleyCat (or tech-related websites and blogs, for that matter) the piece, which also looks at Google‘s plans for e-bookdom, at least gets the basics down – and the skepticism in place.

“Books represent a pretty good value for consumers. They can display them and pass them to friends, and they understand the business model,” said Michael Gartenberg, research director at Jupiter Research, who is skeptical that a profitable e-book market will emerge anytime soon. “We have had dedicated e-book devices on the market for more than a decade, and the payoff always seems to be just a few years away,” he said. But with the Reader getting attention (if not sales) and Amazon’s imminent e-book device on their radar, most major publishers have accelerated the conversion of their titles into electronic formats. “There has been an awful lot of energy around e-books in the last six to 12 months, and we are now making a lot more titles available,” said Matt Shatz, vice president for digital at Random House, which plans to have around 6,500 e-books available by 2008. It has had about 3,500 available for the last few years.

Still, some retailers remain wary – especially Barnes & Noble, famously invested in e-books until they got out in 2003. “If an affordable device can come to the market, sure we’d love to bring it to our customers, and we will,” said B&N CEO Steve Riggio. “But right now we don’t see an affordable device in the immediate future.”

If the WSJ Says Stephenie Meyer is the Next Big Thing, It Must Be True

And for once, a headline is both cheeky and sincere; every message board I lurk on and nearly every bookstore I frequent seems to have someone swooning over the romantic adventures of Bella and Edward, starcrossed lovers because he’s a vampire and she isn’t. So no wonder Stephenie Meyer – whose books were originally bought by Little, Brown for $750,000 in a world rights deal- has more than earned out the publisher’s investment. And now, with ECLIPSE selling more than 150,000 copies in its opening day of sales, it is safe to say that “life after Harry” might not be so bad after all.

“We were anticipating the book would be very big, but it has exceeded our expectations,” Steve Riggio, chief executive of Barnes & Noble, told Jeff Trachtenberg. “As booksellers, we’re thrilled.” Little, Brown, too, thought ECLIPSE might sell 40,000 copies in its first week based on past success of TWILIGHT and NEW MOON. “I’ve been in this business for 20 years, and I’ve never seen anything like this,” said Megan Tingley, the imprint’s publisher. So they’ve gone back to press, Meyer continues to pack in thousands at signings and it should be interesting to see what the reception will be when the fourth and final volume comes out next year.

B&N Dips During Holiday Season

After Barnes & Noble indicated to the financial sector that prospects looked good for the last months of 2006, the story says otherwise. In a statement released on Thursday, they announced that same-store sales – or sales from stores open for a minimum of 12 months, and a key measure of industry performance – edged down 0.1 percent during the holiday season, below company expectations. The news was better overall for the nine-week holiday period between October 29 and December 30, as total Barnes & Noble sales grew 2.6 percent to $1.1 billion. But the news was grim no matter what for B. Dalton: same-store sales fell 7.6 percent from holiday 2005 to holiday 2006, and overall sales fell 31.3 percent to $28.4 million, affected by closing 32 stores over the past 12 months.

B&N Chief Steve Riggio understates things by saying the news was “somewhat disappointing” in light of a a “highly promotional and competitive environment.” Translation: the holiday season was crowded with big-name blockbusters in a way we haven’t seen in years, and that sales still declined spells trouble for the industry. Were the wrong horses back? Did certain veteran authors finally plateau or fall off? The numbers will tell, but since the winter and spring seasons are looking weak, don’t expect cheery news anytime soon, at least from B&N’s camp…