How the Internet affects business : Borders files for bankruptcy

If you went (February 2011) to a mall with the Borders Bookstore  and wanted  to relax- the Borders Bookstore with Seattle coffee was the place to go. The problem was that you would check prices at Amazon on your Blackberry/iPhone and  would  often postpone your purchase. Being inside the mall meant good traffic for Borders  but not necessarily sales. In contrast, you really make a trip to Barnes and Noble with a much firmer intent to buy. Also, there are all manner of promotions,incentives to buy at Barnes and Noble compared to Borders. Keep in mind that almost everyone who buys from both stores is likely to have bought online from

With no coffee for customers or real estate,store staff,store heating,cooling and cleaning costs it really is no fair competition between Borders and Amazon ! The changing  book retailing business was  addressed at least partially by Barnes and Noble with upgrades to  the store experience complete with Starbucks coffee and a great ambiance, fine  tuning their store offers to match up to the Amazon prices plus postage. A major foray into on-line book retailing by Barnes and Noble helped them to stay in business, at least  for now.

Borders has a restructuring loan from GE Capital for $505 million and at least 200 of the 650 stores are expected to close. Employment at Borders had reduced from 35,000 to 19,5000 in the last 5 years according to the NY times. Closing another 200 stores would cost at least 6000 jobs nationwide.

We saw the  travel industry,music industry,newspaper industry  and yesterday the stock exchange industry change drastically because of the Internet and technology.

Whatever your industry, it really is important to look squarely and urgently at what technology and the Internet is doing to your industry- no matter what industry you are in.

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