Barnes & Noble’s College Humor

February 27, 2015

There’s no question that Barnes & Noble is making the right move in splitting its placid college bookstore division from its tumultuously flailing NOOK division. The only question is why the heck they merged the two units in the first place. (more…)

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How Would You Save Barnes & Noble?

March 30, 2012

What is it about the anonymity of the web that turns us instantly into triumphalist armchair critics? Best Buy today announced another disappointing quarter and we-who-know-all proclaim that the company is doomed, as are all retailers, and Amazon will be the only company left on the planet. (more…)

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Every Time a Bookstore Dies a Pixel Glows

July 20, 2011

Borders is dead.

The post-mortems abound. Some blame management. Some blame fate. Most just muse.

The first Borders store was launched forty years ago by brothers Tom and Louis Borders while studying at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor. In 2009 Borders had sales of $2.8 billion from over 500 stores and nearly 20,000 staff. I’d call that some amazing management, a fine fate. In ordinary times you don’t have to be clever to manage a business like that. Just turn on the lights in the morning and you’ll make money.

But let’s tell it like it is. Changing technology killed Borders. (more…)

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