Book-retailing giant Borders (NYSE:BGP) said Wednesday that its second-quarter loss widened, driven by lower in-store demand that could not be wholly offset by a spike in online sales amid the launch of its new eBook store.
The chain posted a net loss of $46.7 million, or 67 cents a share, compared with a loss of $45.6 million, or 76 cents a share, in the same quarter last year.
Excluding special items, the loss was 74 cents a share, much worse than average analyst estimates of a 13-cent loss, according to a Thomson Reuters poll.
Revenue for the Ann Arbor, Mich., company was $526.1 million, down 11.5% from $594.2 million in the earlier-year period, and widely missing the Street’s view of $547.25 million.
Earnings were boosted by a 56.2% jump in online sales, helped by the launch of its eBook store last quarter, though offset by a 6.8% drop in comparable-store sales.
“Recognizing that online and digital will be a significant part of our business moving forward, we are focused on increasing our share of the eBook market by growing our digital offerings to position Borders as the preferred destination for digital reading,” said Borders CEO Mike Edwards.
Borders already offers an assortment of eReading devices and said it plans to announce more in the coming weeks.
The company is launching next quarter its Borders Reward Plus program, at a $20 annual fee, as well as a free enhanced program, to try to entice customers during the holiday shopping season.