Barnes & Noble Inc hired a former Cablevision Systems Corp executive with experience in spinning off businesses and overseeing mergers to be its new finance chief.
The largest U.S. bookstore chain said on Monday that Michael Huseby would start his new job as chief financial Officer on Tuesday, replacing interim CFO Allen Lindstrom, who had been in the position for six months.
Barnes & Noble, which said in January it was considering turning its Nook digital book and device business into a stand-alone entity separate from the stores, touted Huseby's role in spinning off two businesses at Cablevision, where he was CFO from 2004 to 2011.
Huseby, 56, also had deal-making experience. Earlier in his career, he worked at AT&T Broadband and led the team that completed its merger with Comcast in 2002.
Huseby also was CFO at cable operator Charter Communications Inc.
Janney Capital Markets analyst David Strasser praised the appointment, saying Barnes & Noble needed to hire a CFO with background in technology given its shift toward digital books, and said Huseby looked to be "an excellent fit."
Huseby will receive a base salary of $850,000, according to a regulatory filing. He will also get 275,000 Barnes & Noble shares in two installments on the second and third anniversaries of his starting date.
Barnes & Noble is investing heavily to develop its popular Nook devices and the e-books sales they generate as readers move away from traditional books.
Its Nook sales rose 38 percent during the holiday quarter. In January, Barnes & Noble said it may spin off its digital business to "unlock" its value.
Barnes & Noble shares rose 1.3 percent to $13.57 in afternoon trading.
(Reporting By Phil Wahba in New York; Editing by Gerald E. McCormick and Maureen Bavdek)