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BUSINESS
April 30, 2012 | By Michelle Maltais
Microsoft seems to have found an open window back into the e-book business, closing the door on an ongoing patent dispute with its new partner. The company announced it's making a $300-million investment into a strategic partnership with Barnes & Noble's digital media businesses. This financial infusion will result in an as-yet-unnamed new subsidiary for B&N's Nook device in which Microsoft will have a minority stake. “The shift to digital is putting the world's libraries and newsstands in the palm of every person's hand, and is the beginning of a journey that will impact how people read, interact with, and enjoy new forms of content,” said Andy Lees, Microsoft president, said in a statement.
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BUSINESS
April 23, 2012 | Bloomberg News
Barnes & Noble Inc. shares rose sharply after Jana Partners, a hedge fund that has pushed for companies to sell off assets, disclosed a 12% stake in the largest U.S. bookstore chain. The New York-based retailer's shares jumped 18% to $13.41. Barnes & Noble is considering separating its growing Nook digital unit into a separate company so investors will give it the higher valuation of a technology business. In March the company hired a new chief financial officer, Michael Huseby, who helped spin off two units while at Cablevision Systems Corp.
BUSINESS
April 12, 2012 | By Deborah Netburn
E-reader lovers, get ready to toss your clip-on light--Barnes & Noble has just announced a new version of its Nook Simple Touch Reader that has an adjustable glow light built right in, making it possible to read in the dark -- unobtrusively. This is excellent news for middle-of-the-night readers, partners of middle-of-the-night readers who can't sleep with the light on, and parents trapped in a dark hotel room with a sleeping baby at 7:45 p.m. The new Nook will hit stores in May and will cost $139 -- about $40 more than the original Nook.
BUSINESS
March 13, 2012 | By Shan Li
Struggling Barnes & Noble Inc., in its latest attempt to draw shoppers into bricks-and-mortar stores, is adding 25 in-store boutiques that sell products from Penguin publishing house, a report said. These boutiques, which have already been tested in 10 Barnes & Noble stores, are stocked with books published by Penguin and other gift-type items such as mugs and totes, the Wall Street Journal reported. Each one occupies about 200 square feet. The test boutiques have proved successful thus far, and Barnes & Noble decided to expand the concept into more than two dozen other stores, said Patricia Bostelman, a vice president of marketing for the bookseller.
BUSINESS
February 22, 2012 | By Tiffany Hsu, Los Angeles Times
Wal-Mart Stores Inc.'s strategy of offering deep discounts over the holiday season helped the world's largest retailer perk up its revenue, but profit for its fiscal fourth quarter was down compared with a year earlier. The chain had sales of $122.3 billion in the quarter that ended Jan. 31, up 5.8% from $115.6 billion the year before. But Wal-Mart's profit slipped 13% to $5.4 billion, or $1.50 a share, compared with $6.2 billion, or $1.70 a share, a year earlier. In same store sales, the chain reported a 1.5% year-over-year boost in the quarter — its second such increase after nine straight declines.
BUSINESS
February 21, 2012 | By Nathan Olivarez-Giles
When Barnes & Noble launched the Nook Tablet last fall, it did so at a higher price and with more storage space than the rival Amazon Kindle Fire. But on Tuesday, Barnes & Noble's Nook Tablet was dropped down to Amazon's level. Barnes & Noble has announced a new version of its Nook Tablet with 8 gigabytes of storage and a price of $199 , matching the Kindle Fire on both points. The previous version of the Nook Tablet , which was released in November, is exactly the same as the new lower-priced offering, except it has 16 gigabytes of built-in storage and sells at a price of $249 . Barnes & Noble's other 8-gigabyte tablet, known as the Nook Color, was cut from $199 to $169 on Tuesday as well.
BUSINESS
January 31, 2012 | By Shan Li
Bookseller Barnes & Noble volleyed another shot at rival Amazon.com  by announcing that the chain will stop selling books in its stores published by the Internet retail giant. Jaime Carey, chief merchandising officer at Barnes & Noble, said in a statement Tuesday that Amazon had "undermined" the book industry by pushing for exclusive deals with authors, agents and publishers. The decision escalates the long-running rivalry between the companies as they battle over the burgeoning digital book market with rival e-readers (Amazon's Kindle, Barnes & Noble's Nook)
BUSINESS
January 6, 2012 | By Nathan Olivarez-Giles, Los Angeles Times
Shares of Barnes & Noble Inc. plunged 17% on Thursday after the book retailer said it was evaluating the possible sale of its Nook e-reader and tablet business. The New York company also said that as a result of investments in growing its Nook business and slow sales of its $99 Nook Simple Touch e-reader — which competes with rival Amazon.com Inc.'s Kindle e-reader — it expects to post a loss for the year of $1.10 to $1.40 a share. Barnes & Noble said it was considering spinning off the Nook business despite record sales over the holiday season.
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