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Barnes & Noble results strengthen hand of activist investor

US bookstore group Barnes and Noble is unlikely to have fended off activist shareholder Ron Burkle, who is attempting to wrestle control of the family-controlled business, following the release of its end of quarter results on Tuesday.

The company reported a net loss of $63 million for the quarter ending 31 July, despite total sales increasing by 21% to $1.4 billion, compared with the same period last year.

Shareholders weren't impressed, with the stock price in the New York-based group falling 2.2% to $14.66.

Burkle, whose Yucaipa Funds investment firm is the second largest shareholder behind the founding Riggio family, is trying to remove a poison pill provision that limits his shareholding to 20%. (Continue reading here)

Burkle has blamed the family for the management of its falling stock price, which has dropped 25% in the last year.

The Riggio family is pursuing a strategy that aims to improve and increase its digital offering, which currently includes e-commerce site bn.com and eReading product NOOK.

Last week, it announced that it was nominating former investment banker David G Golden, who has 20 years' experience advising technology companies, to the board of directors alongside chairman Len Riggio.

The battle is set to come to a head at the Barnes & Noble AGM on 28 September when Burkle intends to get himself and two Yucaipa nominees elected to board of directors.

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