Is Apple Interested In Purchasing Barnes & Noble?

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Would it make sense for Apple to purchase Barnes & Noble, the nations largest book retailer? If you read into Internet gossip, and you know you do, this is the rumor of the moment. It appears the rumor started over at BGR where an "unproven source claiming to have knowledge of discussions within Apple to possibly purchase Barnes & Noble."

If you step back for a second and look at the situation, it kind of makes sense. If a deal did get done, this would give Apple access to Barnes & Noble's ever expanding library of digital books for their own iBooks. In turn this would also allow Apple to discontinue the NOOK, which is an iPad competitor (and I use that term lightly). The acquisition would also give Apple access to convert some of their brick and mortar locations into Apple stores, which would help with their aggressive push into the retail setting.

Sure the rumored asking price for Barnes & Noble might seem steep, ranging from anywhere between $1 billion to $1.5 billion, but Apple has $76 billion in cash laying around, according to AppleInsider.

The deal does make sense just thinking about it, but some don't think the deal makes much sense for Apple. Brian Marshall, with Gleacher & Company, wrote to investors on Thursday that he doesn't think Apple will target Barnes & Noble.

Marshall also went on to say that spending over $1 billion dollars on Barnes & Noble would not be a wise use of Apple's money. AI has more from Marshall, "We would much prefer to see AAPL use cash for strategic purposes and balance sheet optimization (e.g., acquisition of content rights, dividend initiation, share repurchases, etc.)".

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