The biggest news in Barnes & Noble's first-quarter report, issued this morning, is that chairman Len Riggio has "suspended" his attempt to buy the company's retail business, which was announced in February. In an amended SEC filing, Riggio stated: "While I reserve the right to pursue an offer in the future, I believe it is in the company's best interests to focus on the business at hand. Right now our priority should be to serve the more than 10 million customers who own Nook devices, to concentrate on building our retail business, and to accelerate the sale of Nook products in our stores, and in the marketplace."
In the quarter, ended July 27, consolidated revenue fell 8.5%, to $1.3 billion, and the consolidated net loss was $87 million, more than double the net loss of $39.8 million in the same period a year ago.
Go read the whole report. One bad financial report doesn't mean much of anything, but this is a continuation of a series, and the poor performance of B&N's Nook e-book division is disheartening, considering how much of their store real estate they give over to promoting Nooks. The fact that Riggio, who has always been passionate about Barnes & Noble, has given up on buying the retail side is especially disheartening.