Barnes & Noble to Split Nook and Retail Business into Seperate Companies

iStock Editorial/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- Barnes & Noble will split its business into two companies "with the objective of optimizing shareholder value," the Board of Directors decided Wednesday, with one business dedicated to its brick-and-mortar retail operation and the other working on the company's Nook tablet.

In a statement released to coincide with its report for the end of the 2014 fiscal year, Barnes & Noble says it aims to complete the separation by the end of the first quarter of the next calendar year. With Nook sales down 22.3 percent for the quarter and 35.2 percent for the year, the company said it "determined that these businesses will have the best chance of optimizing shareholder value if they are capitalized and operated separately."

With Amazon's Kindle having claimed the lion's share of the market for e-readers, Nook sales dipped heavily. Barnes & Noble had hoped the tablet would help it maintain its place as America's largest bookseller.

Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

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