B&N 'could close a third of stores in next decade'

B&N 'could close a third of stores in next decade'

US bookstore chain Barnes & Noble could lose a third of its stores in the next 10 years, according to chief executive Mitchell Klipper.

Speaking in an interview with the Wall Street Journal, Klipper described how “every business evolves”, with B&N looking to reduce its branches.

The company currently has 689 stores across the US, alongside a separate chain of 674 college book shops. But Klipper said “In 10 years we’ll have 450 to 500 stores”, a move which he described as “a good business model”.

He added: “You have to adjust your overhead, and get smart with smart systems. Is it what it used to be when you were opening 80 stores a year and dropping stores everywhere? Probably not. It's different. But every business evolves.”

Earlier in the year, B&N reported a 10.9% decrease in sales over the last two months of 2012 compared to the same period in 2011, which sales of its e-reader device, the Nook, also declining.