Skip to main content

Barnes & Noble CEO resigns following Nook losses

Barnes & Noble Nook Simple Touch eReader (CEO William Lynch)William Lynch (pictured) resigned from his position as chief executive of Barnes & Noble on Monday after failing to make a success of the bookseller’s move into the digital market with its Nook tablets and e-readers.

Battling against established giants in the space such as Amazon, Google and Apple, Lynch’s mission, which he accepted three years ago, was always going to be an uphill battle.

Just a couple of weeks ago, the New York-based company announced grim financial results for its latest quarter that saw losses with its Nook digital business double to 34 percent, destroying profits from its bookstores. At the same time, Barnes & Noble said it would no longer manufacture its own range of tablets, including the (heavily discounted) Nook HD and Nook HD+.

Determined not to give up on the digital space just yet but looking for ways to cut costs, the company said it has plans to launch a new tablet “co-branded with yet-to-be-announced third-party manufacturers of consumer electronics products.” It’ll also continue to sell its Simple Touch and GlowLight e-readers.

While its Nook Book Store continues to trade, the bookseller has also said it’s currently developing a number of Nook apps for various mobile platforms.

Management changes

News of Lynch’s departure came with the announcement of a slew of other changes at the company – chief financial officer Michael Huseby, for example, has been named chief executive of the Nook Media Unit and president of Barnes & Noble. Allen Lindstrom, meanwhile, has been promoted to corporate chief financial officer and will report to Huseby.

The company has not named a replacement for Lynch. Instead, Huseby, Mitchell Klipper (CEO of the retail division), and Max Roberts (CEO of the college division) will for the time being report directly to Leonard Riggio, executive chairman of Barnes & Noble’s.

Early reviews for Barnes & Noble mobile hardware were promising, but faced with increasing competition from the likes of Amazon and Google with their competitively priced Kindle Fire and Nexus tablets, the company has found it increasingly difficult to compete. Lynch was never going to have it easy, and unless the company changes tack, neither will his eventual replacement.

Editors' Recommendations

Trevor Mogg
Contributing Editor
Not so many moons ago, Trevor moved from one tea-loving island nation that drives on the left (Britain) to another (Japan)…
Much-desired iPhone feature may not arrive until 2027
The Apple logo on the iPhone 14 Pro Max.

We’ve heard a lot in recent years about an iPhone that ditches the Dynamic Island, placing the selfie camera and FaceID technology beneath the glass for a clean, full display. But despite a growing number of Android phones adopting the design, for the iPhone it still seems a ways off.

In 2022, oft-reliable Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo claimed that a full display could arrive with next year's iPhone 16, though others in the same field have since suggested that it may take several more iterations of the iPhone before the tech giant is able to make the change.

Read more
This smart ring maker has some wild product plans for 2024
A person holding the Ultrahuman Air ring, showing the sensors.

“We wanted to chat about what's coming in the near future, as well as some new product launches that are happening over the next couple of months, which I think you'll find really interesting. I wanted to give you a sneak peek into what's coming.”

This was how Mohit Kumar, founder and CEO of Ultrahuman, started our conversation when I spoke to him over Zoom. And in doing so, he definitely had my attention. What followed was a fascinating glimpse at how the Ultrahuman Ring Air that I wore recently is only the start for this four-year-old company.
15 new product releases

Read more
Samsung Galaxy Tab S8 line prices slashed for the holidays
A Samsung Galaxy Tab S8 is held up on top of a desk.

If you're thinking about getting a tablet for a holiday gift -- whether for a loved one or for yourself -- you should check out the discounts that are available for the Samsung Galaxy Tab S8 line of devices. The previous-generation tablets are still pretty reliable by today's standards, and they offer amazing value because of Samsung's discounts. For their 128GB versions, the Samsung Galaxy Tab S8 is down to $510 from $700 for $190 in savings, the Samsung Galaxy Tab S8+ is down to $630 from $900 for $270 in savings, and the Samsung Galaxy Tab S8 Ultra is down to $720 from $1,100 for $380 in savings. If you're interested in any of these tablet deals, you're going to have to hurry with your purchase if you want the device to arrive before the rush of the holiday season starts.
Samsung Galaxy Tab S8 (128GB) -- $510, was $700

The Samsung Galaxy Tab S8 features an 11-inch touchscreen with a 120Hz refresh rate for super smooth movements on the display, and it's powered by the Qualcomm Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 with 8GB of RAM that enables fast performance while you launch and use apps. What makes it stand out from other Android tablets is its suite of productivity features, including the customizable Edge Panel, the versatility of the S Pen, and the ability to function as a portable monitor, among others. The Samsung Galaxy Tab S8 also has an 8,000 mAh battery and the option to expand its storage capacity by up to 1TB through a microSD card.

Read more