Barnes & Noble To Close Third of Stores

Your News Companion by Ben Mathis-Lilley
Jan. 28 2013 11:41 AM

Barnes & Noble Will Close 20 Stores a Year for Next Decade

143605979
A Barnes & Noble store in Chicago

Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images.

Mitchell Klipper, CEO of Barnes & Noble's retail group, laid out his plans for the national book chain in a recent interview with the Wall Street Journal that serves as the latest data point in the decline of big-box retailers. The big takeaway: Barnes & Nobles will close about 20 stores a year over the next decade, cutting roughly a third of the bookseller's bricks-and-mortar locations in the process. The Journal offers a quick recap of the fate of other major retailers of late:

Plenty of retailers have been felled by digital competition in the past decade, including Tower Records, Circuit City Stores and Barnes & Noble's former rival, Borders Group Inc. Retail consultant Doug Stephens, whose book, "The Retail Revival," is being published in the U.S. in March, predicts that mainstream booksellers eventually will "become a thing of the past."
Advertisement

Barnes & Noble peaked at 726 stores in 2008. In contrast, Klipper estimates that number will fall to around 450 or 500 by around 2023. Still, he's not ready to concede defeat just yet. He told the paper that only about 20 of the chain's current 689 stores lose money. "This is what's losing money, a handful," he said. "Then you go from making money to making a lot of money." Full story here.

Josh Voorhees is a Slate senior writer. He lives in Iowa City. 

TODAY IN SLATE

Politics

Don’t Worry, Obama Isn’t Sending U.S. Troops to Fight ISIS

But the next president might. 

The Extraordinary Amicus Brief That Attempts to Explain the Wu-Tang Clan to the Supreme Court Justices

Amazon Is Officially a Gadget Company. Here Are Its Six New Devices.

The Human Need to Find Connections in Everything

It’s the source of creativity and delusions. It can harm us more than it helps us.

How Much Should You Loathe NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell?

Here are the facts.

Altered State

The Plight of the Pre-Legalization Marijuana Offender

What should happen to weed users and dealers busted before the stuff was legal?

Surprise! The Women Hired to Fix the NFL Think the NFL Is Just Great.

You Shouldn’t Spank Anyone but Your Consensual Sex Partner

Moneybox
Sept. 17 2014 5:10 PM The Most Awkward Scenario in Which a Man Can Hold a Door for a Woman
  News & Politics
Altered State
Sept. 17 2014 11:51 PM The Plight of the Pre-Legalization Marijuana Offender What should happen to weed users and dealers busted before the stuff was legal?
  Business
Business Insider
Sept. 17 2014 1:36 PM Nate Silver Versus Princeton Professor: Who Has the Right Models?
  Life
Dear Prudence
Sept. 18 2014 6:00 AM All Shook Up My 11-year-old has been exploring herself with my “back massager.” Should I stop her?
  Double X
The XX Factor
Sept. 17 2014 6:14 PM Today in Gender Gaps: Biking
  Slate Plus
Slate Fare
Sept. 17 2014 9:37 AM Is Slate Too Liberal?  A members-only open thread.
  Arts
Brow Beat
Sept. 17 2014 8:25 PM A New Song and Music Video From Angel Olsen, Indie’s Next Big Thing
  Technology
Future Tense
Sept. 17 2014 9:00 PM Amazon Is Now a Gadget Company
  Health & Science
Bad Astronomy
Sept. 18 2014 7:30 AM Red and Green Ghosts Haunt the Stormy Night
  Sports
Sports Nut
Sept. 17 2014 3:51 PM NFL Jerk Watch: Roger Goodell How much should you loathe the pro football commissioner?