Following years of rumors and speculation, Barnes & Noble has confirmed that it will be splitting its Nook hardware line and its brick and mortar retail business into two different companies. The move will be finalized by the end of the financial year.
After enjoying a modicum of success initially, the Nook series of e-readers failed to maintain their momentum against the likes of Amazon's Kindle e-readers. Barnes & Noble also ventured into the tablet segment with the Nook HD+ and the Nook Color, but these devices failed to attract mainstream consumer attention despite offering decent hardware specs.
Barnes & Noble launched the Nook hardware line following a $300 million investment from Microsoft in 2012 which gave the Redmond-based organisation a 17.6% stake in the company.
The move to split Barnes & Noble into two entities will serve to alleviate strain on the retail side of the business, which is faring relatively better than the Nook division. Earlier this year, it was reported that overall revenue from Nook fell by 50.4 percent over the course of the year, with no new models announced during that time period.
That is set to change in the near future, as it was revealed earlier this month that Barnes & Noble was looking to launch a Nook edition of the Galaxy Tab 4. There isn't an estimate as to when the tablet would be available, but documents filed with the SEC indicate that Barnes & Noble is buying one million tablets initially.
What are your thoughts on the split? Did you use Nook hardware in the past?
Source: Barnes & Noble