Bruised after battle with Amazon, Barnes & Noble is going private

Woman drawing large yellow fish eating smaller fish acquisitions concept

The $6.50 per share purchase price represents a 43 percent premium to the 10-day volume weighted average closing share price of Barnes & Noble's common stock ended June 5, 2019, the day before rumors of a potential transaction were reported in the media. It became the nation's second-largest bookseller and began selling books online in partnership with IBM and Sears.

"The important thing, from our perspective, is that they are the mirror of us", Daunt said in a phone interview, referring to Barnes & Noble.

"Having been the leader of Barnes & Noble for 54 years, I have had the privilege of working with the very best people in all the world of bookselling, including our great store managers and booksellers, who work in our stores", Riggio said.

Very likely Barnes & Noble, with its almost 630 stores and Amazon always in the background, will need to shrink some more and keep tinkering with its merchandising, stores and engagement. Barnes & Noble had a net margin of 0.04% and a return on equity of 7.09%. Finally, BNP Paribas Arbitrage SA raised its holdings in shares of Barnes & Noble by 316.5% in the first quarter. However, the stock traded above that level as recently as December, and it's been falling steadily for more than four years as the chain failed to secure an acquirer sooner. Maverick Capital Ltd. now owns 1,771,630 shares of the specialty retailer's stock worth $9,620,000 after acquiring an additional 710,960 shares during the period.

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Despite the relentless competition from Amazon, Barnes & Noble has managed to somewhat stabilize its business over the past few years, with revenue declines narrowing to a drop of 3.1% last year.

The U.S. bookseller expects the deal to close by the end of September. Its $113 million of net debt, with a maturity date of 2023, is also manageable.

Nook e-readers remain a prominent part of the company's business strategy and a decent head-to-head chip against Kobos and Amazon's Kindle devices, though there will be a sore need for innovation on literature technology.

As for Barnes & Noble, there are probably benefits to managing its challenges away from the public eye. She previously wrote an M&A column for Bloomberg News.

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