Barnes & Noble, the #1 book retailer in the United States, has a rich history that can be traced back to 1873 when Charles M. Barnes started the business in his Illinois home.
In 1971 the trade name Barnes & Noble and the flagship store in Manhattan were acquired by bookseller Leonard Riggio who merged it with his own bookselling business. Within a few years, he had grown the Barnes & Noble Fifth Avenue store in New York City into “The World’s Largest Bookstore,” with 150,000 textbook and trade titles.
Throughout the 1970s and 1980s, the company grew to add bookstores throughout the country. In the 1990s, Riggio introduced the concept of the ‘superstore’, which revolutionized the idea of bookselling by combining a vast selection of books with an experienced bookselling staff and a warm and spacious atmosphere. The stores also added music, educational toys, games and gifts.
The company went on to add an e-commerce website, BN.com. In 2009 it entered the eBook market and launched its brand of e-Reading products by the name of NOOK.
In 2016, Barnes & Noble began introducing new prototype stores in select markets across the country, featuring a contemporary aesthetic with books at the centre. It also expanded its food and beverage offerings, with comfortable seating for a welcoming customer experience.
In August of 2019, Barnes & Noble was acquired by Elliott Advisors (UK) Limited (“Elliott”) and taken private.
At present, Barnes & Noble serves over 600 communities in all 50 states and remains the #1 book retailer in the United States.
The one featured here is the outlet in St. Petersburg in Florida.