Barnes & Noble
posted a $2 million profit for its fiscal second quarter, and it's largely thanks to booming Nook sales, which contributed to consolidated revenues of $1.9 billion. Nook
digital content sales jumped 38 percent for the quarter compared to last year, while the entire Nook segment -- readers, digital content, and accessories -- went up 6 percent to $160 million. Had it not been for the Nook, things would be looking decidedly different for B&N.
The company's Retail segment, which consists of bookstores and BN.com businesses, decreased 3 percent year-over-year to $996 million due to "flat comparable store sales, store closures, and lower BN.com sales." B&N's college bookstores added another $773 million in revenue, which was essentially flat (up 0.4 percent) compared to last year, and its consumer bookstore division declined 2.9 percent to $996 million.
It's an interesting mix of numbers. Clearly there's still money to be made on paper books in what's now become a digital age, but the Nook's outstanding growth is a sign of where the market is headed. It also helps that these devices are now affordable, whereas eBook readers were fairly expensive when they first debuted. Over the holiday weekend, B&N said its Nook device sales doubled.
"We expect our two highly acclaimed new NOOK products, and our Microsoft partnership on Windows 8 to further fuel the growth of our digital business, and are encouraged by the promising start to the holidays in our retail and digital businesses," said William Lynch, Chief Executive Officer of B&N.
also benefited from the holiday weekend, noting that its Kindle
device sales more than doubled last year's record, and that Cyber Monday was the biggest day ever for Kindle sales worldwide.