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Industry news: Riggio sells back shares, Americans support libraries, suit fails against Amazon and Big Six

December 14, 2013

Riggio sells Barnes & Noble shares, but that may not be bad

Barnes & Noble founder and leading shareholder Len Riggio sold more than two million shares of the company’s stock this week, in spite of the fact that the stock price was near its 52-week low. The shares constituted a little less than an eighth of Riggio’s complete holdings in the company, but he still owns 26%, which makes him the company’s largest shareholder. Riggio’s regulatory filing on the sale said that he’s selling for tax planning purposes.  Barnes & Noble has been saddled by losses in both its retail and Nook divisions, with especially deep losses in the Nook division.

What this means to you: The Barron’s piece used as the basis for this article paints a different picture of B&N than most mainstream media stories. Barron’s is continuing to recommend the company’s stock, saying that it’s reduced its losses in the Nook division and that the retail division is strong. And while a previous pundit said that he had no confidence in B&N, John Tinker, an analyst with the Maxim Group has reiterated a “buy” rating for the company, saying that there’s great value in the standalone store value.

90% say library closures would hurt their community

It’s rare to get 90% of people to agree on anything, so its significant that 90% of those polled in the Pew Digital Library report said that if their public library closed, it would affect their community. Even more–94%–said that their library increases the quality of life in their community. But more than 52% said that libraries are not as important as they used to be. Perhaps surprisingly, more than half said that their library has done a good job keeping up with technology. The survey polled more than 6000 people 16 and older during the July to September timeframe.

What this means to you: Although the survey shows clear support for libraries, it doesn’t pose alternatives–such as would you support libraries if it meant cuts in other services or would you support libraries if it required your taxes to be increased? This isn’t to say that Americans don’t support public libraries–it’s clear that they do. But the poll does not measure the depth of that support.

Judge dismisses suit against Amazon and Big Six Five

A federal judge has dismissed a lawsuit filed by Independent booksellers against Amazon and the major New York publishers that alleged the entered into a monopoly by requiring digital rights management (DRM) software on books sold in Amazon’s online store. In dismissing the suit, Judge Jed Rakoff said that he could find no evidence of the charged collusion, saying that the suit doesn’t even allege that such an agreement existed, only that it may have existed.

What this means to you: Although Amazon and the big publisher do present a danger to independent booksellers, that, of itself, isn’t enough to lose a lawsuit.

 

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One Comment
  1. December 15, 2013 7:48 am

    All judges are as pure as driven snow. It is written – in yellow snow your peers told you to beware of.
    Oh! And there IS a Santa Clause !

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