MAIN NEWS HEADLINES
March 1-15, 2004 Edition
Barnes & Noble Posts
Healthy 8 Percent Sales
Increase For 2003
NEW YORK, NY/2/19/04Barnes & Noble, Inc. (NYSE: BKS), the worlds largest bookseller, today reported sales for the fourth quarter and for the full year ended January 31, 2004:Barnes & Noble store sales were $1.3 billion for the quarter, an increase of 10.0% over the prior year. For the full year ended January 31, 2004, sales were $3.9 billion, an increase of 8.0%. Comparable store sales increased 6.4% for the fourth quarter and 3.2% for the year. Comparable store sales for the month of January increased 7.8%. B. Dalton sales, which comprise approximately 5.0% of total bookstore sales, were $79.7 million for the quarter, a decrease of (10.3%), and $221.0 million for the year, a decrease of (15.0%), due primarily to the closing of 63 stores. Comparable store sales increased 4.1% for the fourth quarter and decreased (2.0%) for the year.
The company expects full year consolidated earnings to be approximately $2.07 per share, at the high end of previously issued guidance of $2.00 to $2.07 per share. Subject to the completion of the year end audits, earnings per share is expected to be $1.75 for Barnes & Noble bookstores, $0.50 for GameStop and ($0.18) for Barnes & Noble.com. Earnings per share estimates for GameStop and Barnes & Noble.com are based upon Barnes & Noble, Inc.s percentage ownership interest in each company. Earnings results for fiscal 2003 and guidance for fiscal 2004 will be issued on or about March 18, 2004.
ABOUT BARNES & NOBLE, INC.
Barnes & Noble, Inc. (NYSE: BKS) is the worlds largest bookseller, operating 647 Barnes & Noble stores in 49 states. It also operates 195 B. Dalton Bookseller stores, primarily in regional shopping malls. The company offers titles from more than 50,000 publisher imprints, including thousands of small, independent publishers and university presses. It conducts its e-commerce business through Barnes & Noble.com (NASDAQ: BNBN) ( http://www.bn.com).
Barnes & Noble also has approximately a 65% interest in GameStop (NYSE: GME), the nations largest video game and entertainment software specialty retailer with 1,514 stores.
General financial information on Barnes & Noble, Inc. can be obtained via the Internet by visiting the companys corporate Web site: http://www.barnesandnobleinc.com/financials.