Cable icon and Liberty Media (Nasdaq: LCAPA) CEO John Malone has reportedly offered $1 billion to take over national bookseller and erstwhile new media player Barnes & Noble.
Malone's not looking at the stores' collections of pulp fiction; he wants to tap into B&N's growing Nook e-reader market to "further distribute his media content," as the New York Post put it. The Nook is a bright spot for B&N, which has been taking a beating on traditional ink and paper products. It's reportedly captured 25 percent of the digital books market that was started by--and still dominated by--Amazon.com's Kindle and more recently the iPad.
In related news, Amazon.com said that since April 1 it has sold more Kindle e-reader books (105) than print editions. Kindle sales, the company said, have tripled since the same period in 2010 and its $114 version of the Kindle is now its bestselling device.
Thus, it's not difficult to imagine Malone's thinking since Liberty Media owns QVC (and the opportunities there just jump off the page) and Starz along with parts of Expedia and Sirius XM Radio.
Barnes & Noble launches Nook Apps with Android 2.2 update
Barnes & Noble kicks off NOOKdeveloper ereader app effort
Liberty Media making money on QVC, Starz, and eCommerce