Barnes & Noble Education Jumps on Report It's Undervalued

Barnes & Noble Education Inc., which was spun off from Barnes & Noble Inc. in August, rose 5.4 percent after Barron’s said the college-bookstore chain could be worth twice its current market value.

The chain of about 725 stores has a “near-monopoly” position on the campuses where it operates, Barron’s said. And the Basking Ridge, New Jersey-based company only serves a quarter of U.S. college students, giving it room to grow, the newspaper said.

Barnes & Noble Education’s stock rose 68 cents to $13.24 on Monday in New York, bringing its market value to almost $640 million. Before the rally, the shares had been down 15 percent.

The company is pursuing a growth strategy following its breakup with Barnes & Noble, a move first announced in February. Chief Executive Officer Max Roberts plans to operate 1,000 stores in the next five years. The company also aims to sell get more revenue from outside the textbook category, which has been hurt by the popularity of e-books and a shift to rental textbooks. The plans include selling more apparel, which already accounts for a quarter of its sales, and promoting the digital education platform Yuzu.

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