Barnes & Noble Inc. this morning released its first financial results since the September 30 completion of its acquisition of Barnes & Noble College Booksellers. The figures show the college division performing better than the retail operations, although same-store sales for both are down in the second quarter.
Total sales in the retail group fell 3% for the second quarter, which began August 2 and will close October 31, to $665 million, and comp-store sales were down 4.1% (sales are through October 3). Barnes & Noble.com had a good period, with sales up 8%. Sales in the quarter included sales of The Lost Symbol, which B&N said broke one-day sales records for an adult fiction title. B&N expects comp sales to be down 1% to 3% in the retail group for the entire second quarter and to decline 2% to 4% for the full fiscal year, which will end May 1, 2010 (B&N changed its fiscal year following the completion of the B&N College deal).
Total sales in the college division rose 2%, to $770 million, but comp sales dipped 0.7%. The fall is the college division’s busiest period and includes the back-to-school rush. B&N said it expects comp-store sales in the college unit to fall 1% to 3% from the time of the September 30 acquisition to the end of the quarter on October 31, and expects comp-store sales to range from up 1% to down 1% for the full year (from the time of the acquisition). Total sales in the college division are expected to increase 1% to 3% because of the addition of new contracts.
B&N said it doesn’t expect the full benefits of the transaction to show up on its bottom line until the next fiscal year. Earnings from the back-to-school rush occurred prior to the close of the transaction and the acquisition resulted in a number of one-time charges.