British bookstore chain Waterstone's sold to A&NN

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British bookstore chain Waterstone's sold to A&NN

May 20 2011

HMV Group has sold British bookstore chain Waterstone's to A&NN Group for 53 million (UK pounds).

Waterstones was established in 1982 by Tim Waterstone and currently employs about 4500 staff mainly in the UK but also in parts of Europe. Waterstones bought the Ottakar's and Dillons bookshops after becoming a subsidiary of the HMV Group in 1998.

The HMV Group also owns London bookseller Hatchards and Irish store Hodges Figgis. It is not clear whether these are part of the sale to A&NN.

Update 5/23/2011: Publishers celebrate that Waterstones will continue to be a high street presence - summed up by Penguin UK CEO Tom Weldon who told The Sunday Telegraph, "Bricks and mortar retailers are clearly the shop window. All publishers have an interest in the financial security of Waterstone's. And publishers need to help Waterstone's in any way they can..."

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