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Barnes & Noble.com Q1 2001 Sales Increase 23%

Designed to wet the palette of investors and shareholders alike, New York-based Barnes & Noble.com has recorded guidance for the first quarter ending March 31, 2001 that includes a sales projection falling in the neighborhood of $109 million. The projection is an increase of 23 percent from the corresponding period a year ago.

While most companies, including computer business-to-consumer sales company Outpost.com, have weakened under the pressure of shipping items for free, Barnes & Noble.com credits the increase in sales of its books and music merchandise with free shipping, and an absence of off-line advertising.

In a prepared statement, Steve Riggio, vice chairman of Barnes & Noble.com, said "In an environment where the flattening of e-commerce sales is being widely reported, especially in the book industry, our sales continue to grow, which is a clear indication that e-commerce is an important component of the bookselling retail marketplace.

And as the e-commerce market continues to consolidate, we believe Barnes & Noble.com is well positioned to grow sales and market share going forward."

Barnes & Noble.com expects to release complete first quarter 2001 results on April 26, 2001, after the markets close.

The dot-com is majority owned by bookseller Barnes & Noble Inc. and German media giant Bertelsmann AG.

In early morning going, shares in Barnes & Noble.com were trading at $1.27, up 3 cents from yesterday's close at $1.24 and well-off its 52-week high of $11.12.



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