27 Replies Latest reply on Jan 10, 2012 10:28 PM by Mark_OB1

    Barnes & Noble To Explore Separation Of NOOK Digital Unit

    gb18


       

       

      Barnes & Noble To Explore Separation Of NOOK Digital Unit; Revises FY12 View



      (RTTNews.com) - Barnes & Noble Inc. Thursday announced its decision to pursue strategic exploratory work to separate the NOOK digital business, while reporting a 70% growth in NOOK unit sales, including NOOK Simple Touch, NOOK Color and the new NOOK Tablet, for the nine-week holiday period ending December 31, 2011.

      The company noted that NOOK Tablet's sales exceeded expectations, while sales of NOOK Simple Touch lagged expectations, indicating a stronger customer preference for color devices. Digital content sales also grew briskly during the same nine-week period, increasing 113% on a comparable basis.

      For the nine-week holiday period, Barnes & Noble store sales increased 2.5% over the prior-year period to $1.2 billion. Comparable-store sales were up 3.4%, on top of a 9.7% rise last year. Retail core comparable store sales, defined as the sales of non-digital merchandise, increased 4.5% over the prior year.

      For fiscal 2012, the company currently expects consolidated sales between $7.0 billion and $7.2 billion. Comparable sales at Barnes & Noble stores are expected to increase 1%, Barnes & Noble College sales are expected to be flat, and sales are expected to increase 40% to 50% at BN.com. Further, Barnes & Noble now anticipates full year losses per share to be in a range of $1.40 to $1.10.

      For comments and feedback: contact editorial@rttnews.com

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          • Re: Barnes & Noble To Explore Separation Of NOOK Digital Unit
            flyingtoastr

            Wall Street overreacts to a company that might possibly some time in the future change it's game plan? Well I never....

              • Re: Barnes & Noble To Explore Separation Of NOOK Digital Unit

                 


                flyingtoastr wrote:

                Wall Street overreacts to a company that might possibly some time in the future change it's game plan? Well I never....



                I don't think that what the market was reacting to. This quote seems to explain what those numbers released by BN mean:

                 

                Analysts noted that Nook sales were disappointing overall. Barclays Capital analyst Alan Rifkin said:

                Nook unit sales increased 70% year over year. Management noted that sales of Nook Tablet beat expectations while sales of Nook Simple Touch missed expectations. This is a concern to us in that, absent the launch period, demand for Nook products appears to be decelerating faster than original expectations. The company I s now forecasting total Nook revenues of $1.5B in 2012, a 17% reduction from its earlier $1.8B forecast, which management reiterated on December 1, 2011. All in, results suggest that not only did holiday sales come in below plan, but the Nook business collectively was also below plan.

                 

                 

            • Re: Barnes & Noble To Explore Separation Of NOOK Digital Unit

              Recent news is all a potential threat to the nook.  If I read between the lines of Apple rumors and Google rumors, they both may get into the eBook market.  It would not surprise me for Apple to have a book reader, apps and eBooks in the iTunes market place before too long.

               

              Google has rumors about a 7 inch tablet.  They could move into the eBook and reader market easily.

               

              The media spin around the power of Apple/Google/Facebook/Amazon can kill products that are superior like the nook.

               

              For now, I am sticking with the nook since it is the technological leader with updates and good service.

               

               

               

               

               

              • Re: Barnes & Noble To Explore Separation Of NOOK Digital Unit
                patgolfneb
                I think we all recognize that tablets in general, even niche tablets like the nook series are under constant price pressure and like other electronic devices become comodities. Why are phone makers and service providers pushing smart phones so hard? Because they have a window where they can differentiate themselves. Feature phones are no longer money makers. After the networks are upgraded and the market matures margins shrink. The same thing will happen to tablets. BN must grow its brand as an online content provider while BM sales decline. Raising money for the new areas and remaking the old is tough. Especially when big firms like Amazon, Apple, Google, are after your traditional customers.
                  • Re: Barnes & Noble To Explore Separation Of NOOK Digital Unit
                    Omnigeek

                    The thought occurs to me that separating NOOK out from brick & mortar B&N would also allow the Nooks to go international by partnering with booksellers in other countries, thereby eliminating one advantage Amazon currently has.

                     

                    I'm still against the separation as I think B&N has a chance here to guide the digital evolution of the bookstore but I can see the attraction of setting the Nook up as a platform that could be adopted by booksellers in the UK, Australia, New Zealand, etc.

                      • Re: Barnes & Noble To Explore Separation Of NOOK Digital Unit
                        tuck229

                        As time passes, big bookstores are going to become fewer and fewer.  In 15 years, there may only be a scattering of traditional B&N stores, probably in really big cities.  What may replace that are Nook stores.  Kind of like an Apple store, only with a coffee shop, some book shelves with best sellers, and some shelves with those games and gift sets. Of course everything as far as online sales will be the same for B&N, which is where most people will have to go for all the books that aren't as common sellers.

                         

                        Remember when it was weird for gas stations to have restaurants built in them?  Now it is so common we don't even think about it.  A Nook coffee shop with a few rows of shelves may be the bookstores of the future.

                         

                        I can't imagine how much it costs just to pay the electric bill and the lease for these huge B&N stores.  In a tough economy with a shifting market in you main product, it puts B&N in a tough spot.  SNL did a parody a couple years ago that may be sad but true:

                        http://www.hulu.com/watch/124868/saturday-night-live-barnes-and-noble

                         

                         

                    • Re: Barnes & Noble To Explore Separation Of NOOK Digital Unit
                      patgolfneb
                      I wouldn't feel guilty for not buying anything, browsing and hospitality for readers is part of their offering. Using their Wi Fi to shop Amazon crosses the line. If you just want to find the best price use 4g or stay home and use your own Wi Fi. Amazon already avoids collecting sales tax and offers no local jobs, they don't need any more help.
                        • Re: Barnes & Noble To Explore Separation Of NOOK Digital Unit

                          patgolfneb wrote:
                          I wouldn't feel guilty for not buying anything, browsing and hospitality for readers is part of their offering. Using their Wi Fi to shop Amazon crosses the line. If you just want to find the best price use 4g or stay home and use your own Wi Fi. Amazon already avoids collecting sales tax and offers no local jobs, they don't need any more help.

                          Bah.  There is no crossing the line in my opinion.  The wi-fi is free and you should be able to do any sort of online shopping you want, even if that is at one of BN's competitors.

                           

                          I'd also contend that Amazon does create local jobs.  Outside of their shipping centers that are located around the country, they increase the need for delivery services like UPS/FedEx which certainly employ local folks.  Amazon also has an affilate program that allows local businesses to market their goods and services through Amazon.com.  This increases the revenue of the local business which also helps the local economy.  Finally, when someone gets the sales tax "discount" by purchasing online through Amazon.com it leaves them with additional dollars in their pocket that could be spent locally in other areas (eating out, entertainment, even paying bills). Do you think that your community would be better off had Amazon.com never existed?  I don't.

                           

                           

                        • Re: Barnes & Noble To Explore Separation Of NOOK Digital Unit
                          patgolfneb
                          Doncr, the behavior is rude and selfish, if you condone rude selfish behavior we have no common ground. One of countries biggest problems is failing to recognize that there is a difference between self interest and selfishness. With rights come responibilities, including not taking unfair advantage and acknowledging the other parties reason for providing a service. Using a BN supplied ammenity to shop Amazon is rude, like I said use your smartphone and do it on your own dime.
                          • Re: Barnes & Noble To Explore Separation Of NOOK Digital Unit
                            patgolfneb
                            Dean, are you really saying because somone else was selfish and rude, that justifies being selfish and rude yourself? There is no legal or rights issue here, just courtesy. All of these small things add up. What happened to treating others as you would like to be treated?
                              • Greedy stupidity
                                DeanGibson

                                patgolfneb wrote:
                                Dean, are you really saying because somone else was selfish and rude, that justifies being selfish and rude yourself? There is no legal or rights issue here, just courtesy. All of these small things add up. What happened to treating others as you would like to be treated?

                                 

                                I hope you meant "doncr" and not me, because I agree with you.  The founding fathers discussed a democratic form of government based on "enlightened self-interest".  Instead, it has been replaced by "greedy stupidity".  When the stupidity overcomes the greed, we then call it "entitlement".

                                 

                                It's not just here;  you should see what it's like over on the XDA-devs forums, where a bunch of "end users" (I prefer the word "parasites") are supporting someone who has modified the Linux kernel and then released it without releasing source code (the classic issue the GPL was written to prevent), because the person who did it "has done so much for the computer world" (etc).  The XDA-devs forum has (properly) banned any links to this offender's web site, but there is this small cadre of parasites that supports him, because in their rationalizations, "free software" means "free for me".  Parasites.

                                 

                                And it's not just there, either.  The fundamental problem in the world today is a sense of entitlement, instead of personal responsiblity.  Today I quit my job as the Chief Flight Instructor for a flight school, for non-payment of wages.  The owner's response:  "I am sorry, but you have no idea what kind of a spot you are leaving me with this decision."  That's because I've left him in a tight spot with regard to certain issues.  Its not like the non-payment is for recent work;  it's for flights between June and September.  It's not like I didn't give enough notice:  I told him in September that I wanted to resign effective the end of the year, and he felt that didn't give him enough time to find a replacement.  OK, I agreed to give him until the end of May.  Implied in there somewhere, was the idea that I would continue to be paid.

                                 

                                So now I've supposedly left him "high and dry" with the sudden notice and refusal to work.  Does anyone here think that an employee should give two weeks notice, when they are not being paid ????  Further, what kind of business owner would stiff an employee, when he knew the employee wanted to leave, but had agreed to stay on as a favor to the owner?!?!?

                                 

                                Note:  Since I am semi-retired, I am in perhaps a better position than most to weather this type of nonsense (and I've limited my exposure), but nevertheless it is a totally unacceptable practice to me, to not be paid wages owned at the end of the normal payroll cycle.  In my mind, prompt payment of wages to employees is at the top of the list of financial obligations.  This practice of non-prompt payment of wages is also beign perpetrated on other instructors there, for whom the promise of payment of back wages (and flight time) keeps them working.

                                 

                                So, when I see this nonsense about it's ok to use a B&N store's WiFI for the purpose of shopping a competitor's site, don't be surprised if I throw you (not you, Pat) solidly into the "entitlement/greedy stupidity" category.  If I'm wrong. prove me wrong by ethical actions, not self-centered words.

                                 

                                 

                                  • Re: Greedy stupidity

                                    Dean,

                                     

                                    You are of course right about the obligation of employers to pay promised wages.  If I remember correctly, wages and back wages are senior to most creditor claims in bankrupcty.  Your former employer sounds like a parasite.

                                      • Re: Greedy stupidity

                                        @patgolfneb,

                                         

                                        OK, I just want to make sure that I understand your position clearly.  You're going to call someone "rude and selfish" that uses the in-store wi-fi to make an online purchase from another reseller of the books they saw in the store?

                                         

                                        If that's your stance, then to whom am I being rude?  Other customers in the store?  And how am I being selfish?  Am I keeping you from buying the books in-store?   

                                         

                                        Does the silent and quick 1-Click purchase through Amazon.com that takes less than 30 seconds of wi-fi connectivity somehow diminish your wi-fi or shopping experience?  No one in the store is going to be aware that I'm doing this so I don't see how anyone could possibly say that this is rude or selfish. 

                                         

                                        What if I simply made a note of the books I wanted to buy while in the store then used my 30 seconds of wi-fi to buy them online from Starbucks?  Is that selfish?  Rude?  

                                         

                                        What if I used the in-store wi-fi to reserve the books at my local public library?  Or instead of buying them at that BN store, I go and buy them at another BN store, or from BN.com, denying the store where I first saw the books of the sale.  Is that rude/selfish as well?  

                                         

                                        Just trying to understand your logic here...  Do you also feel that it's rude or selfish to enter a contest like the Publishers Clearing House Sweepstakes without buying some magazine subscriptions?

                                         

                                         

                                         

                                          • Re: Greedy stupidity

                                            Actually, there was a case a year or two ago where someone was convicted of a crime of theft. He was sitting outside a place that offered free wifi (Mickey D's, Starbucks I don't recall) using the wifi without buying anything. He was convicted and I think it was upheld. So on that theory, someone *could* be prosecuted for using B&N wifi, which is intended for customers, to buy from a competitor. Of course, this is mitigated by the fact that he was using a B&N product that he presumably paid them for.

                                             

                                            FWIW all Home Depot stores have free public wifi that can be accessed in the parking lot. Just in case you absolutely positively must get on line. And they don't state any restrictions as to use.

                                              • Re: Greedy stupidity
                                                emmyk

                                                I'm not sure which case you're refering to, but there has been at least one case where it wasn't the *business* that complained, it was the cops who investigated "suspicious" behavior and looked for something to prosecute when they found someone "stealing" wifi.  They casually asked him about his connection, and when he said it was to the nearby coffee house, they decided he was stealing.  The owner of the coffee house was apologetic, and said that she didn't care, but here's what the prosecutor said: "It wasn't anything we were looking for, and it wasn't anything that we frankly particularly wanted to get involved in, but it basically fell in our lap and it was a little hard to just look the other way".  The guy was charged with a felony.  He eventually got off with a relatively small fine and "community service"--which was kinda ironic, since he was a firefighter in the city.

                                                 

                                                There was also an infamous case in which someone was charged with "theft of services" for sitting outside of a public library after hours, using its free wifi, which was not shut down at night.  The *library* did not complain in this case, either.


                                                So, depending on where you live and how eager local LE is to arrest people for *whatever*, it might not matter a whit what Home Depot thinks of the situation.  Home Depot has not, in my city, complained about day laborers who congregate in their parking lots in the AM looking for work, but the city has sometimes decided to break up all daily-employment lines (in favor of a central area with registration, etc.).

                                                  • Re: Greedy stupidity
                                                    patgolfneb
                                                    Emmyk, my position was not that the behavior is in any way criminal, only rude and selfish. Frankly the library example is unfortunate, what harm was there to a publicly supported facility? Unless it was being used to support an illegal activity, child porn comes to mind. Often people who are unemployed rely on libraries for internet access, and library hours have been slashed in many areas.
                                                • Re: Greedy stupidity
                                                  Omnigeek

                                                  doncr wrote:

                                                  @patgolfneb,

                                                   

                                                  OK, I just want to make sure that I understand your position clearly.  You're going to call someone "rude and selfish" that uses the in-store wi-fi to make an online purchase from another reseller of the books they saw in the store?

                                                   

                                                  If that's your stance, then to whom am I being rude?  Other customers in the store?  And how am I being selfish?  Am I keeping you from buying the books in-store?   

                                                   

                                                  Does the silent and quick 1-Click purchase through Amazon.com that takes less than 30 seconds of wi-fi connectivity somehow diminish your wi-fi or shopping experience?  No one in the store is going to be aware that I'm doing this so I don't see how anyone could possibly say that this is rude or selfish. 

                                                   

                                                  What if I simply made a note of the books I wanted to buy while in the store then used my 30 seconds of wi-fi to buy them online from Starbucks?  Is that selfish?  Rude?  

                                                   

                                                  What if I used the in-store wi-fi to reserve the books at my local public library?  Or instead of buying them at that BN store, I go and buy them at another BN store, or from BN.com, denying the store where I first saw the books of the sale.  Is that rude/selfish as well?  

                                                   

                                                  Just trying to understand your logic here...  Do you also feel that it's rude or selfish to enter a contest like the Publishers Clearing House Sweepstakes without buying some magazine subscriptions?

                                                   

                                                   


                                                  Yes, it's rude to the store that you're using their resources and facilities to shop another competitor.  This is the exact "me first" entitlement mentaility that is wrecking the country.  It's not your 30 seconds of wi-fi, it's wi-fi provided by the store for their customers -- which you obviously aren't if you're shopping for books elsewhere.

                                                   

                                              • Re: Greedy stupidity
                                                bobstro

                                                DeanGibson wrote:

                                                [...] It's not just here;  you should see what it's like over on the XDA-devs forums, where a bunch of "end users" (I prefer the word "parasites") are supporting someone who has modified the Linux kernel and then released it without releasing source code (the classic issue the GPL was written to prevent), because the person who did it "has done so much for the computer world" (etc).  The XDA-devs forum has (properly) banned any links to this offender's web site, but there is this small cadre of parasites that supports him, because in their rationalizations, "free software" means "free for me".  Parasites. 


                                                Do tell. I am not aware of that saga. I'm glad XDA is acting correctly. I wonder if he'll get any legal attention given that the code is covered by a license.

                                                 

                                                Good luck getting your payment. I wouldn't have any qualms about walking when I'm not getting paid!

                                                • Re: Greedy stupidity
                                                  bklvr896

                                                  Dean, I don't think you did anything wrong with your employer, as you said, it's that sense of entitlement and greed.

                                                   

                                                  I have a friend who walked into work on a Friday morning and she and the other bookkeeper were informationed at lunch time that they were being laid off immediately and were escorted off the premises.  (They were going to be replaced by one accountant, not yet hired)

                                                   

                                                  Because someone really didn't think ahead and what would happen if you laid off both bookkeepers and they had no one to do the payroll the next week.  They had the nerve to call my friend and ask her if she would come back and do the payroll for them.  

                                                  • Re: Greedy stupidity
                                                    patgolfneb
                                                    Dean, no I didn't think you would rationalize that way, but it wasn't clear why you pointed out the students behavior. I am gratifed that at least one person shares a similar point of view, my perspective hasn't received much support recently. I recognize the assistance you provide on tech issues without the take no prisoners attitude some express. Sorry about your employment situation. My friends loved your cat picture, don't worry I only used your first name. Is there an association which rates schools you could report the owners lack of integrity to. I know legal action is usually not a worthwhile response from personal experience.
                                                      • Re: Greedy stupidity
                                                        DeanGibson

                                                        patgolfneb wrote:
                                                        Dean,... it wasn't clear why you pointed out the students behavior.
                                                        Sorry about your employment situation.... Is there an association which rates schools you could report the owners lack of integrity to?  I know legal action is usually not a worthwhile response from personal experience.

                                                        The students' behavior was another example of entitlement that is becoming pervasive in our society.  As for the use of B&N Wifi:  It's one thing in my mind to go into a store and use the B&N Wifi to check mail, and/or do a brief bit of browsing, only to stumble across a deal on Amazon, and buy something there.  It's quite a different thing to come into a B&N store for the express purpose of extensively using the WiFi for several hours, or for the purpose of browsing competitor sites, knowing that nothing will be bought at B&N (or whatever retailer).  Note that I don't have a problem with "comparison shopping".  The line is grey in some instances, but I think most of us can recognize behavior that is clearly over the line.

                                                         

                                                        Please note that almost all retailers are realists, and are willing to put up with a certain amount of "entitlement" in order to sell stuff or give the store a good reputation.  That doesn't mean that I'm not going to label it for what it is.  For the record, when I look back at 40 years of my adult life, I can recall instances where I took advantage of a retailer in some form or another.  I don't look back at those acts with pride of self-justification, however.

                                                         

                                                        --

                                                         

                                                        As for the employment situation, no need to be sorry for me.  Remember I was doing the company a favor by extending my resignation, so there's no loss there.

                                                         

                                                        I've seen this happen before at other companies, where friends lost thousands of dollars in lost wages that were not paid (the companies always go belly-up).  So, I conducted myself in a manner that left me limited financial exposure (less than the cost of my two Nooks).  I expected to be unpaid, due to what had been happening to other instructors.  So, when the shoe dropped, I was ready.  I have ZERO tolerance for this.  This employer will think more than twice about ever doing this to another person, whether or not his business survives.  Sadly, the other instructors (so far) have remained there.  I feel sorry for them.

                                                         

                                                      • Re: Greedy stupidity
                                                        Mark_OB1

                                                        Dean wrote:

                                                         

                                                        > The owner's response: "I am sorry, but you have no idea what kind of a spot you are leaving me with this decision."  <

                                                         

                                                        Wow... just, wow.  :smileysurprised:  The mind boggles.

                                                         

                                                        - Mark

                                                         

                                                    • Re: Barnes & Noble To Explore Separation Of NOOK Digital Unit

                                                      What if your in the store using a Kindle/ipad/laptop(kindle app) and dont have a B&N acct.?

                                                       

                                                      This is a silly disscussion IMHO

                                                       

                                                      :smileytongue: