B&N Reported a 9% Decline in Revenue Over the Holiday Season

There's a lot of drinking going on at B&N HQ this week, after the report they just released:

Barnes & Noble today reported that comparable store sales decreased 9.1% for the nine-week holiday period ending December 31, 2016. Online sales increased approximately 2% for the holiday period.

The sales decrease was largely due to lower traffic, as well as the decline in coloring books and artist supplies - a reversal of last year's phenomenon - and the comparison to last year's best-selling album by Adele - the largest selling CD in our history - which combined accounted for approximately one third of the sales decline.

In spite of the holiday sales shortfall, the Company is still expected to exceed last year's operating profit owing to strong expense management.

"Although books outperformed the company as a whole, we were not pleased with our results," said Len Riggio, Chief Executive Officer of Barnes & Noble, Inc. "Fortunately, post-holiday traffic and sales have improved and we are optimistic for the remainder of the fiscal year, and we believe this most unusual retail season may be behind us."

In comparison, revenues rose by a couple percent last holiday season.

B&N took a hit from the election, which depressed retail sales in the period leading up to 8 November, but most of the holiday sales period (over seven weeks) fell after the election, when rebounding sales should have made up for the slowdown.

While that is the case with Amazon (or so they say), clearly B&N did not benefit from the rebound.

image by Random Retail

About Nate Hoffelder (11809 Articles)
Nate Hoffelder is the founder and editor of The Digital Reader:"I've been into reading ebooks since forever, but I only got my first ereader in July 2007. Everything quickly spiraled out of control from there. Before I started this blog in January 2010 I covered ebooks, ebook readers, and digital publishing for about 2 years as a part of MobileRead Forums. It's a great community, and being a member is a joy. But I thought I could make something out of how I covered the news for MobileRead, so I started this blog."

2 Comments on B&N Reported a 9% Decline in Revenue Over the Holiday Season

  1. Amazon’s sales statement tell us nothing about how books or ebooks performed in the period.

  2. It is interesting to note that four retailers have come in with lower sale over sales numbers for the holidays: Macy’s, Penny’s, Sears (no surprise there) and Kohls. Macy’s and Kohls have bucked downturn trends in the past. So B&N having a drop isn’t too surprising, but so far the seasonal reporting has not been good from anyone (waiting on Amazon and Best Buy, my two picks for meeting or beating.)

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