image45[1] The Wall Street Journal reports that Ron Burkle has lost his bid to seat himself and his chosen nominees on Barnes & Noble’s board of directors. Barnes & Noble shareholders elected founder Len Riggio and his nominees for the other two available seats to the Board of Directors.

Barnes & Noble is proceeding to auction itself off, and has said that Burkle’s Yucaipa Companies is welcome to submit its own bid to be considered alongside all the others.

It is unclear what the results of the auction will bode for Barnes & Noble’s Nook (and, for that matter, for the e-book companies Fictionwise and eReader that Barnes & Noble also owns). But given the decline of print publishing lately, those e-reading properties are probably Barnes & Noble’s biggest attraction to any forward-looking company.

It will be interesting to see who submits bids. Even if Barnes & Noble decides to sell itself directly to Riggio (there have been rumors he plans to make his own bid), knowing who else was interested will give us a good idea of what companies might think e-books are the way forward.

(Found via Galleycat.)


  1. That was the easy part — giving Burkle’s boys the boot. Barnes and Noble’s fundamental problem is it remains US bound while its competitors are worldwide. Like the phone company, it has to figure out how to use the existing business cash to re-invent itself. The Nook and online are a start but it’s tiny vs. the main company — selling physical books in physical stores. It needs to innovate and immediately.

  2. Too much is being made of the “sale” of B&N.
    Riggle made it clear he intended to buy it himself from the beginning.
    Unless somebody wants to ridiculously overbid for B&N the end result will be that Riggle and his supporters will be taking B&N private until the transition to digital has played out.

  3. Felix Torres: Dead on.

    MarkChan: B&N may not mean a lot to the world. It does, however, mean quality bookselling to Americans. Even Americans who shop solely at Amazon would probably be sad to see B&N go. A while back, B&N was the big, bad wolf kicking out all the small, independent booksellers. Now B&N is the endearing emblem of bookselling the way it used to be. Funny how things change. Regardless, it’s sad.

  4. OK then lets take a look at KB Home and the less than stellar job Ron Burkle has done as Board of Director. quote: Burkle claimed that Riggio wouldn’t tolerate critical questions about his management strategy. How about the same of Bruce Karatz at KB Home, Leslie Moonves at KB Home/CBS, Timothy Finchem at KB Home/The PGA, Melissa Lora at KB Home/Taco Bell? and it’s corporate strategy of ignoring customer complaints and not fixing homes or buying them back in a timely manner in direct violation of the KB Home “FTC” Federal Trade Commission consent order, where KB Home is suppose to buy back your home within the first year if you are not 100% satisfied? I’m not satisfied? KB Home Board of Directors just ignore you. Whats good for one is good for all. Just Google “KB Home Sucks” Burkle messed it up so bad he had to quit! Not sure if Burkle reads? Does anyone know?

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