Huge American book chain Barnes & Noble may open its first store in Israel. An Israeli businessman is holding talks with the chain to receive the franchise to open the store, the Yedioth Ahronoth daily has learned.
The first Barnes & Noble store opened in 1917. The online store was launched on the internet about 10 years ago.
The chain currently includes about 850 stores, only in the United States, where 445 million books are sold every year. The chain owns huge stores which include Starbucks coffee shops and places to sit.
Barnes & Noble, which also owns a publishing agency, presented in 2005 a net profit of USD 146 million.
Steimatzky, the biggest book chain in Israel, has already heard about the talks with Barnes & Noble and is planning preliminary steps. Yedioth Ahronoth has learned that Steimatzky plans to open huge flagships stores, in the American chain's style.
The first store will open at the commercial center being built by Alfred Akirov in Jerusalem's Mamilla neighborhood, and it will take over an area of hundreds of square meters. The company is looking for additional locations to open stores in Haifa and Tel Aviv.
Steimatzky currently owns 160 stores, most of which are located in shopping malls and are relatively small.