Barnes & Noble buyout: Barnes & Noble sold to hedge fund Elliott Management


The book retailer and Elliott Management Corp. announced Friday that they have agreed to a sale price of about $683 million.

Hedge fund Elliott Management Corp is in talks to acquire Barnes & Noble Inc, in a deal that would mark the end of the once-dominant USA book retailer as a publicly listed company, a source familiar with the matter said on Thursday.

Barnes & Noble has been exploring options for a buyout since at least last October, with multiple parties showing interest including founder-chairman Leonard Riggio.

The boss of Waterstones is to take charge at Barnes & Noble after the world's largest activist investor struck a deal to buy the American bookseller. The future of the bookseller's 627 US stores remains murky. "In view of the success they have had in the bookselling marketplace, I believe they are uniquely suited to improve and grow our company for many years ahead".

Elliot's offer of $6.50 per share, represented a premium of about 42 per cent to Wednesday's close, the day before media reports of a potential transaction first surfaced.

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James Daunt, CEO of Waterstones, will assume the role of Barnes & Noble CEO following the completetion of the deal. "We meet these with investment and with all the more confidence for being able to draw on the unrivaled bookselling skills of these two great companies".

He's not kidding about those "fearsome challenges". The bricks-and-mortar giant, on the other hand, has seen its revenue slide each year for the past several years.

Barnes & Noble, which has struggled to compete with Amazon for the past decade, is going private.

The nation's largest retail bookseller has been acquired by a British hedge fund. Elliott Management's current plans for Barnes & Noble reportedly include closing and relocating some of the chain's 600 locations in the United States, though the specifics of these plans have not been reported.