Barnes & Noble's quarterly filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission for the period ended October 31 was its first since the purchase of Barnes & Noble College Booksellers was completed and gives a little more detail on how each business segment fared in the larger B&N. In the filing, B&N also disclosed a small acquisition—it paid $2.3 million for Tikatok, an online platform geared to allow parents and children to write, illustrate, and publish their own books.

In the quarter, the college stores added $65.3 million since the deal was completed on September 30. Barnes & had a good quarter with sales up 9.4%, to $120.5 million, and it too benefited from an acquisition, the March purchase of Fictionwise, which returned B&N to the e-bookstore market. In addition to the sale of e-books, B&N said the sales increase was due to higher traffic to the site. Sales through its superstores fell 2.2% because of a 3.2% decline in same-store sales plus a $20.8 million decrease in sales from closed stores. New stores added $28.3 million to revenues. Dalton's sales dropped 26.7%, primarily due to the closing of 21 outlets. B&N expects to close all of its Dalton stores in early 2010. B&N's publishing unit, Sterling Publishing, had a 16.3% decline in sales in the quarter.

The acquisition of Tikatok moves B&N ever so modestly back into the self-publishing field. (The company was an early investor in iUniverse). Tikatok, founded in 2007, provides tools for parents to help children create books on the Tikatok Web site ( According to the site, costs for producing a title start at $18 for a hardcover and $15 for a paperback with the final cost dependent on number of pages and shipping method. All e-books are $2.99. B&N said the purchase of Tikatok “is part of its overall digital strategy,” and plans to expand its reach “to additional parents, educators and librarians.”

Barnes & Noble Second-Quarter Sales by Segment
(in millions)

2008 2009 % Change
Source: Barnes & Nobles 10-Q
Superstores $971.2 $949.8 -2.2%
B& 110.2 120.5 9.4
Dalton 13.5 9.9 -26.7
College Booksellers -- 65.3 --
Sterling 18.4 15.4 -16.3
Total 1,113.3 1,145.5 4.2