Borders gone!

johnboy 2 June 2011 69

Borders

Liquidators Ferrier Hodgson have announced they haven’t been able to find a buyer for Borders and so the remaining bookstores, including the ones in Canberra, will close.

A total of 315 staff will be affected by the closures, which will take place over the next six to eight weeks.

The final Borders stores will close on July 17, but others may close sooner dependent on the sellthrough of remaining stock.

The Administrator, Mr John Melluish, said the stores are closing because no buyers had emerged for the Borders outlets.

As a lover of books it always seemed that while Borders (and Angus and Robertson for that matter) might have had a lot of books, but they didn’t do a great job of pointing the reader to the best books.


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Jim Jones Jim Jones 8:55 am 23 Jul 11

clueless70 said :

Suggested advertising copy for e-readers of any brand.

–‘Paper-like’ magnetised ink display: just like paper!
–Digital Rights Curtailment. You buy it; we keep it.
–Limited range of titles. Available material subject to oligopolistic commercial interests and middle-of-the-road marketplace demand.
–Poor user interface lacking basic file organisation tools.
–Small display of invariant proportions.
–Unable to display colour images.
–Half or less than half the dot resolution of commercially printed paper.
–Displays 16 levels of grey, the square-root of the greys available on this video display screen.
–Allows days of continuous reading time. After device is recharged for 4 hours, you’re back in business for days more reading.
–Relies on state-of-the-art, global, wireless communications network to function.
–Unavailable where electricity supply unavailable.
–Available intermittently where electricity supply intermittent.
–Lifetime expires as soon as 3G wireless connectivity protocols and hardware become obsolete.
–CAUTION: Fragile. Do not drop, flex, expose to moisture, extreme heat or cold, or place under heavy items. No user serviceable parts inside. Battery non-disposable and costs the same as a soft-cover novel.
–Cost: only ten times the price of a large hardback novel.
–Contents not included in purchase price.

No, I’m not in a hurry to buy one either.

What an appropriate user name.

clueless70 clueless70 8:03 pm 22 Jul 11

Suggested advertising copy for e-readers of any brand.

–‘Paper-like’ magnetised ink display: just like paper!
–Digital Rights Curtailment. You buy it; we keep it.
–Limited range of titles. Available material subject to oligopolistic commercial interests and middle-of-the-road marketplace demand.
–Poor user interface lacking basic file organisation tools.
–Small display of invariant proportions.
–Unable to display colour images.
–Half or less than half the dot resolution of commercially printed paper.
–Displays 16 levels of grey, the square-root of the greys available on this video display screen.
–Allows days of continuous reading time. After device is recharged for 4 hours, you’re back in business for days more reading.
–Relies on state-of-the-art, global, wireless communications network to function.
–Unavailable where electricity supply unavailable.
–Available intermittently where electricity supply intermittent.
–Lifetime expires as soon as 3G wireless connectivity protocols and hardware become obsolete.
–CAUTION: Fragile. Do not drop, flex, expose to moisture, extreme heat or cold, or place under heavy items. No user serviceable parts inside. Battery non-disposable and costs the same as a soft-cover novel.
–Cost: only ten times the price of a large hardback novel.
–Contents not included in purchase price.

No, I’m not in a hurry to buy one either.

creative_canberran creative_canberran 5:30 pm 22 Jul 11

The store is now totally shut up, yet the lights inside continue to burn. WTF is the point of that?

Postalgeek Postalgeek 8:30 am 07 Jul 11

Uh oh. Amazon has bought the Book Depository. No doubt that will spell the demise of free shipping, at least until another company steps into the role.

Time to break the piggy bank and go through that wish list

Thoroughly Smashed Thoroughly Smashed 10:49 am 11 Jun 11

Who’s suggesting that books are dead?

All we’ve seen here is the death of an old business model.

grist grist 10:31 pm 10 Jun 11

astrojax said :

Mysteryman said :

I think it will be a long time before anything is created that can replace the enjoyment of holding a book in your hands. For me, at least.

+1

and unlike vinyl, you don’t need specialised equipment to use a book. what will happen when your kindle packs it in and you’re three pages from the end of a thriller?? plus, i love being able to re-find text in a book because you have a memory of sort of where on which page it was and so can be found flicking back through the pages. long live books.

umm… search!

Thoroughly Smashed Thoroughly Smashed 2:49 pm 10 Jun 11

Waiting until you’re going out of business isn’t quite the right time to try to be competitive.

At least Angus & Robertson had the good sense to discount by 75% when they had their closing down sale.

Jim Jones Jim Jones 2:05 pm 10 Jun 11

rosscoact said :

SheepGroper said :

Borders Civic are now discounting at 30% for most stuff, 40% for DVDs and 20% for cards.

and yet still dearer than you can buy online

+1

rosscoact rosscoact 1:13 pm 10 Jun 11

SheepGroper said :

Borders Civic are now discounting at 30% for most stuff, 40% for DVDs and 20% for cards.

and yet still dearer than you can buy online

SheepGroper SheepGroper 12:27 pm 10 Jun 11

Borders Civic are now discounting at 30% for most stuff, 40% for DVDs and 20% for cards.

NickD NickD 10:07 am 04 Jun 11

Given how bad they were at their core business of running physical bookshops, I don’t see much future for their online sales, especially now that they’ve tarnished their image with the stupid decision to cancel gift cards.

gladbag gladbag 8:05 pm 03 Jun 11

Maybe Civic Library can move in there, so people can still go and read at lunchtime

creative_canberran creative_canberran 6:53 pm 03 Jun 11

Worth noting that the Borders online store at this stage will continue to trade and receive new stock. Given that their chief competition is from Amazon online anyway, this may well be a good move. Remove the expensive, capital intensive retail footprint and incompetent staff and focus online with lower overheads. We could actually see some improved competition come out of this… maybe. All depends on how they play it.

aronde aronde 6:40 pm 03 Jun 11

And Borders also had trouble with spelling –

http://the-riotact.com/its-the-attention-to-detail/28425

lonnie lonnie 6:29 pm 03 Jun 11

Ryan said :

Wonder who will take over the space vacated by Borders? Seems too big for your ‘ordinary’ store and its location probably isn’t best for chopping it up into smaller stores..

MudLark said :

“Vast areas of the Hyperdome (including the newsagent) have disappeared”

Where has the newsagent gone?

Out onto Anketell Street apparently, somewhere along that section of empty shopfronts opposite Southlife.

It’s right near the pedestrian crossing out the front of the Hyperdome. There were “now open” signs out the front yesterday.

Lazy I Lazy I 2:26 pm 03 Jun 11

Internet book sales continued (free plug http://booko.com.au/ )

… and nothing of value was lost.

Thoroughly Smashed Thoroughly Smashed 1:00 pm 03 Jun 11

johnboy said :

As a lover of books it always seemed that while Borders (and Angus and Robertson for that matter) might have had a lot of books, but they didn’t do a great job of pointing the reader to the best books.

Nor, apparently, did they realise their business model had become an anachronism.

Jim Jones Jim Jones 12:24 pm 03 Jun 11

Mysteryman said :

True. I read the wrong link. I was reading an announcement from 2010. My other points remain though – they are still selling more print books than ever before, regardless of their ebook sales. That doesn’t sound like the death of printed books to me.

The market share of ebooks is growing exponentially (a recently released report from the Association of American Publishers puts a figure of 5-6% of profits to member publishers coming from ebooks – this is in keeping with exponential growth).

Similarly, Amazon’s market share has continued to rise since it’s inception (hence they are selling more printed books than previously, because they own more of the market).

It’s still early days, but Amazon are now selling more ebooks than printed books. It was only in 2010 that they announced that they were selling more ebooks than hardcover (which is a very small market).

How would you foresee these shifs in market share occurring if not at the expense of printed books? Is everyone buying more ebooks *and* printed books?

Figures from the AAP don’t support this conclusion (depending on which end of the market you look at, print sales in the US are either declining or stagnant), and Australia reports the same (with not just the liquidation of Angus & Robertson and Borders, but also large distributors such as REDGroup).

In 2010 in Australia, print runs declined by roughly 20%, but overall volume of book industry production actually increased by 4%. eBooks aren’t responsible for this shift (in Australia, ebooks have a very small 3-5% of the market), but they are very quickly coming in to fill the gap.

Because of the regional restrictions to a lot of ebook reading technology, we’re lagging a few years behind the American experience, but the way forward is remarkably clear. eBooks will continue to take more and more market share.

pink little birdie pink little birdie 12:23 pm 03 Jun 11

People who buy books don’t just buy from Amazon. There are still alot of people who buy books from physical book stores… before going to Amazon.
I tend to order my American print books from Dymocks who will get the book in for me. I only order books on the internet as a last resort if I can’t find the book here or can’t order it from a book store.
Amazon might be cheaper but I like going into a store and finding the book I want and then leaving with it… and I’m going to be willing to continue to pay for that service for a long while.

Also have you seen how many people attend the lifeline bookfairs here? The number of people attending is going up each time 🙂

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