Borders & bankruptcy: Did its coupons pave the way?

Borders is filing for Chapter 11 bankruptcy as early as next week, reports the Wall Street Journal. The troubled bookstore chain plans to shutter up to 200 of its 674 stores, with liquidators already bidding for the right to run the store closures.

Our own dealnews archives show that, in late 2010, Borders issued its steepest discount coupons (40% or higher) at about three times the rate that it did in 2009 or 2008. The number of these coupons tripled from 2009 to 2010, from seven in Q4 of 2009, to 21 in Q4 of 2010. The number of coupons in 2008 was 38% of that of 2010.

This massive increase in coupons might have been the company predicting its own demise, as it watched Amazon dominate the digital book market (a market where Borders lacks a strong presence) and tried to recapture market share with aggressive price-cutting. Stay tuned for more news from Borders next week.

An avid gadget lover, Louis Ramirez has covered technology for Gizmodo, CNET, Laptop, and various other publications. Follow him on Twitter — @LouisRamirez. You can also sign up for an email alert for all dealnews features.

DealNews may be compensated by companies mentioned in this article. Please note that, although prices sometimes fluctuate or expire unexpectedly, all products and deals mentioned in this feature were available at the lowest total price we could find at the time of publication (unless otherwise specified).


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