U.S. bookstore chain Barnes & Noble announced on Friday that Elliott Advisors (UK) Limited (an affiliate of Elliot Management Corporation) has acquired the company for US$6.50 per share for an all-cash transaction valued at about US$683 million. Elliot has also assumed any debt by Barnes & Noble.
Elliott previously acquired Waterstones, the largest bookstore chain in the U.K., in June 2018. The CEO of Waterstones, James Daunt, will become the new CEO of Barnes & Noble following the acquisition, and will hold both titles concurrently. Barnes & Noble and Waterstones will operate independently.
In October 2018, the Barnes & Noble board of directors had named a committee to review bids to buy the company. Barnes & Noble has 627 locations across all 50 states.
Leonard Riggio, Barnes & Noble's founder and chairman, will step down as chairman after the acquisition. Riggio also co-founded the GameStop video game retailer.