Barnes and Noble has always been an attractive acquisition target for their Nook or bookstore division. In 2011 Liberty Media initiated a powerplay to buy the chain of retail stores, but settled for a 17% stake in the company. They paid close to $204 million dollars for the equity and it looks like they have had enough. Liberty is selling off 15% of their ownership of B&N and will have a paltry 2% left over.
Many online journalists and newspapers have been lambasting Barnes and Noble for over a few years. The company continues to bleed over a billion dollars in their ereader and eBook initiatives. When word of the Liberty selloff happened the B&N stock plummeted by over 10%.
It is hard to dismiss the fact that the college and bookstore chains are very healthy. They continue to generate profit every financial quarter, but management and Nook Media woes continue to garner negative publicity. The lack of a cohesive direction is prompting investors like Liberty to just abandon the sinking ship.