Barnes & Noble CEO Resigns Because You Didn’t Buy A Nook

In the bookstore arena, two American giants remain: Amazon and Barnes and Noble. Both companies sell dead-tree books and have created their own e-reader brands, and both companies see that e-reader as essential to their future survival. Barnes & Noble CEO William Lynch resigned late yesterday, part of an expected shakeup after the world learned that the Nook division lost a whole bunch of money.

After disappointing results last quarter where the company posted a loss, Barnes & Noble already announced that they plan to find another company to make the Nook-brand Android tablets. The real shakeup will be if Barnes & Noble breaks up, spinning off the money-losing but future-building Nook division into its own company. Who would be interested in that? Well, Microsoft owns about 17% of Nook Media now, and is one candidate to take over the whole business.

The difference is that Amazon has created an entire publishing empire and new formats for literature, and Barnes & Noble … well, they can sell you books for their e-reader.

Barnes & Noble CEO resigns after Nook sales slump [Reuters]