Barnes & Noble’s Nook e-reader sales are down from last year

Jerimiah Yap – Fourth Estate Cooperative Writer

New York, NY, United States (4E) – Bookstore Barnes & Noble Inc. posted a decline in its mobile digital reader sales in its second quarter report. It is the second consecutive quarter that Barnes & Noble has reported a drop in Nook sales. Last year Barnes & Noble experienced a 34 percent increase in Nook sales. It is a completely opposite story this year.

Just for this year alone, the company’s stock has dropped by 18 percent.

“A 23 percent drop in average selling prices and production delays with the Nook Simple Touch with Glowlight, a version of its black-and-white e-reader, hurt device sales last quarter. Sales of digital content, including e-books and applications, rose 46 percent after a gain of 65 percent in the previous quarter, New York-based Barnes & Noble said today in a statement,” Businessweek reported.

If the revenue from the Nook e-reader isn’t included in calculations, Barnes & Noble’s retail sales gained by 7.6 percent. The immense popularity of E.L. James’ erotic bestseller “Fifty Shades of Grey” boosted Barnes & Noble’s retail revenue.

In comparison to Amazon’s Kindle e-reader, the Nook isn’t well-known outside of the United States. The company does plan to expand its reach overseas and its strategy includes partnering with tech giant Microsoft.

“The company is working to boost sales in the Nook unit by expanding outside the U.S. The bookseller said yesterday that it would open a website in the U.K. in the next few months to sell digital books and Nook devices would soon appear in retailers there. Barnes & Noble will also look to grow overseas through a proposed partnership with Microsoft Corp. that was announced in April.

Under the deal that is expected to close in the next few months, Microsoft will invest $ 300 million for an 18 percent stake in a Nook subsidiary that may be spun off into a standalone company,” Businessweek added.

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