Barnes & Noble Lands Three More UK Partnerships

The image on the Foyles.co.uk homepage this morning.

Building on the momentum from this week’s announcement of a partnership with UK electronics retailer John Lewis, Barnes & Noble has secured three more retail partners to sell its Nook devices in the country starting this fall.

Argos, Blackwell’s and Foyles will all begin selling Nook products over the next several months, in time for the holiday shopping season, Barnes & Noble said in a statement this morning. The partners will start by selling the Nook e-ink devices.

Argos is a Target-like retailer with about 700 stores across the UK. Barnes & Noble said that 90% of the population lives within 10 miles of an Argos location. Like John Lewis, Barnes & Noble’s first partner, Argos also sells Kindle and Kobo devices.

Blackwell’s is an academic bookstore with 55 locations at universities around the country. Blackwell’s has told Digital Book World that it will not be seeking out additional partnerships like the one it has formed with Barnes & Noble (read: it won’t be selling the Kindle any time soon).

“We carried out a large amount of research on e-reader devices before deciding to partner with Barnes & Noble. The Nook devices offer the best solution for our customers who are typically students and those from an academic background. We only want to offer our customers a product which we feel meets their needs. Blackwell’s are not looking for any new partners in addition to Barnes & Noble,” said a Blackwell’s spokesperson in a statement.

Foyles, an independent bookshop chain with six locations in London and Bristol, UK. Foyles does not sell Kindle or Kobo devices at the moment, a company spokesperson told Digital Book World, but is open to “new ways in which to deliver books to its customers.” Its agreement with Barnes & Noble to sell the Nook is not exclusive, the spokesperson added.

“Foyles is committed to offering a range of reading options for our customers,” said Foyles CEO Sam Husain. “Although we are free to sell other e-readers we recommend the Nook as the leading e-reading device.”

Foyles has its own e-bookstore with partner Txtr.

In addition to the partnership with John Lewis, these new deals bring the number of stores selling Nook devices in the UK to nearly 800. Considering their respective partnerships with Waterstones (296 locations) and WHSmith, in addition to being sold in Argos and John Lewis, Amazon and Kobo still seem to have more significant retail presences in the country.

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