Tags: Malone | BarnesandNoble | Internet | Liberty

Barnes & Noble Investor Liberty to Cut Stake, Drop Board Seat

Thursday, 03 Apr 2014 09:44 AM

Barnes & Noble Inc. investor Liberty Media Corp. will reduce its stake in the bookstore chain, dropping a board seat and freeing the company to develop a strategy on its own.

Liberty, led by Chairman John Malone, will hold on to about 10 percent of its initial investment, according to a statement today. The company spent $204 million in 2011 to acquire preferred shares that could be converted into a 17 percent stake.

The decision gives Barnes & Noble “greater flexibility to pursue various strategic options,” the bookseller’s chairman, Leonard Riggio, said in the statement. The company has been cutting costs in its Nook tablet division as it weighs whether to separate the digital business from its retail stores, which have suffered from competition with Internet retailers.

Malone has been turning his focus to the cable industry, acquiring a stake last year in Charter Communications Inc. and bidding unsuccessfully for Time Warner Cable Inc. this year.

Liberty’s sale of its stake to “qualified institutional buyers” will close on April 8, it said. Its chief executive officer, Greg Maffei, will step down from the board that day. A Liberty senior vice president, Mark Carleton, will remain a director of Barnes & Noble.

Barnes & Noble, based in New York, fell as much as 9.2 percent to $20.08 in early trading.

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Barnes & Noble Inc. investor Liberty Media Corp. will reduce its stake in the bookstore chain, dropping a board seat and freeing the company to develop a strategy on its own.
Malone,BarnesandNoble,Internet,Liberty
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2014-44-03
Thursday, 03 Apr 2014 09:44 AM
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