Although Barnes had a good last quarter—7% increase in total sales, 64% increase in sales at Barnes&Noble.com—the bankruptcy of Borders is inclining its board to be cautious. The company’s sales report contained a note stating that it has decided to suspend its quarterly stockholder dividend payment in order to have more cash on hand so it can meet whatever market challenges and opportunities caused by this sudden new development.
Not too surprising. It’s not beyond the realm of possibility that B&N might expand into an abandoned Borders storefront or two, and having more cash on hand could help them do it.
BN.com lost $50.5 million in the quarter as per Publishers Weekly,so all profitability came from the stores. Hmm…
Sales of pbooks must be declining fairly rapidly instore if one looks at the fall in net income. Margin on the digital side must be quite low, they need some high margin goods to offset the drop in book sales.
Marketwatch today ( http://bit.ly/hYyKNv ) said:
“The nation’s largest bookstore chain as measured by revenue reported a 25% decline profit over the holiday quarter and cancelled its quarterly dividend to free up $60 million for its digital strategies and other potential opportunities. “