After posting disappointing holiday results, Barnes Noble instituted a round of layoffs yesterday that it says will save the company $40 million annually. After CNBC reported Monday that the retailer fired “lead cashiers and digital leads,” a BN spokesperson confirmed the layoffs, but declined to give the size of the cuts or what departments were affected. However, in a filing Tuesday with the SEC, BN reported that it will take an $11 million charge in its third quarter to account for severance payments.
The filing further noted that BN expects to complete the staff reductions by February 16 of this year with most payments made in the current fiscal year with the remainder paid in fiscal 2019.
BN described the cuts as “a new labor model for its stores that has resulted in the elimination of certain store positions. The new model will allow stores to adjust staff up or down based on the needs of the business, increase store productivity and streamline store operations.”
In early January, BN reported that sales for the holiday period ended December 30, 2017 fell 6.4% compared to the same period a year ago. As a result of the poor sales, BN also reduced its financial performance for the full fiscal year.
With BN unable to grow its revenue, the retailer has been relying on cost cuts to try to steady its bottom line. The company had about 26,000 employees last April. One of its new employees is Timothy Mantel, who was named BN’s chief merchandising officer replacing long-time BN employee Mary Amicucci who left the company last September. Mantel had held CMO roles at GNC and Target.
Editor’s Note: This story has been updated to include new information.