If books are engines of change, Nebraska Book Company (NBC) is transforming college students across the US. One of the largest textbook distributors in the US, NBC sells 6 million-plus books annually. It serves some 2,500 booksellers and operates more than 200 bookstores on or adjacent to college campuses that sell and rent textbooks and other merchandise. NBC also supplies educational materials to private high schools, nontraditional colleges, and corporate and correspondence classes, as well as store management and e-commerce software. Founded in 1915 as a bookstore near The University of Nebraska, NBC emerged from Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in 2012. It is owned by holding company Neebo, Inc.
Nebraska Book Company (NBC) in June 2011 filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection due to declining sales and mounting losses, driven by a shift to online book purchases along with the recession's impact on continuing education. The new debt restructure cuts NBC's $450 million in loans and bonds to some $240 million. The company emerged from bankruptcy in June 2012 with 23 new stores, including Portland State University Bookstore.
NBC's largest business is its bookstore division, which accounts for more than two-thirds of its total sales. The company's textbook division accounts for about 25%, while its complementary services division brings in the rest.
NBC's fiscal 2013 (ended March) sales declined 8% versus the prior year to $458.2 million. Net income totaled $19.3 million versus a loss of $114 million in fiscal 2012. (In connection with its emergence from bankruptcy protection, NBC adopted fresh slate accounting, which means its financial statements are not comparable with previously issued financial statements.)
The company generates substantially all of its revenue within the US.
Prior to emerging from bankruptcy NBC closed 42 bookstores. Leading the company post bankruptcy is Steve Clemente, who was promoted from president and COO of the company to CEO in August 2012. Under Clemente, NBC is seeking to realize its growth strategy of expanding the college stores and textbook divisions, and increasing online sales. In 2014 the company put one of its two buildings in Lincoln, Nebraska up for sale.
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