Is Walmart Going to Buy B&N’s Nook Division?


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There’s an article over on TheStreet.com from last week about how Walmart should buy Barnes and Noble’s struggling Nook division.

It’s no secret that Barnes and Noble’s Nook business has been on a steady decline since 2012, and so far B&N has been unable to find anyone willing to shell out enough cash to unload it.

Microsoft couldn’t even help revive Nook with over 600 million dollars invested in the company in early 2013, and now B&N has just turned around and bought Microsoft’s 17.6% stake back for 120 million.

Barnes and Noble’s new plan is to spin off Nook Media into an entirely separate company from B&N in August 2015.

About the only thing that could stop the spin off at this point is if B&N could find a buyer for Nook.

Walmart doesn’t exactly come to mind as a potential buyer, but there’s a slight chance it could happen.
According to an anonymous source, Walmart is exploring the idea of entering the ebook business.

If true, purchasing an existing and established ebook business, even an unsuccessful one, could be an easier and quicker route with an infrastructure and customer base already in place than building an ebook business from scratch. And considering all of Nook’s recent struggles, Walmart could likely get Nook for cheap.

Still, Walmart buying Nook seems a bit unlikely. As much as they want to increase their share in the digital content market, that’s not something that they have shown they can do. And it’s hard to see Nook being the thing to turn that around.

via: TheStreet (be warned of annoying auto-run videos and twenty ads per page)

4 Responses to “Is Walmart Going to Buy B&N’s Nook Division?”

  1. Walmart could have bought the Sony e-book business for cheap last year. Sony probably almost gave it away.

  2. I’m a NOOK partisan, but I don’t see any route to survival. One of the reasons I bought my 1st-Edition NOOK was because it was pretty much store-agnostic. I could buy e-books most anywhere, or check them out from the library (Kindle couldn’t do that at the time).

    Today’s NOOK is part of a walled garden, same as Kindle. But the NOOK garden of e-books is full of weeds. Higher prices, poorer selection, poor customer service.

    I can’t imagine any company getting excited about the remaining NOOK hardware operations (Glow Light). And turning around the content part of the business would be quite the challenge. Not to mention having to separate it off from the bn.com web operation.

    Someone might well buy NOOK Media for the College Bookstore business. But I can’t see them continuing the NOOK side for any length of time.

  3. I hope Walmart stays out of it. I’m anti-Walmart and don’t do business there. I would hate to have to choose.

  4. I have a Nook HD and I love it. In fact my daughter as a Nook HD and she loves it. I also bought another Nook HD for my grandson and we think they work great. Its a great ereader and you can get on the Internet to get book anywhere even the Library. We think the HG is great, don’t like the Glow Light but the Nook HD and Nook HD Plus is a go.

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