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Borders Cuts 20% of Corporate Staff

A total of 274 Borders employees were laid off, most of which were corporate employees in all departments except the buyer/planner group. According to the PW article, 156 positions at the Ann Arbor, MI, headquarters were eliminated and 118 positions at the distribution centers, field marketing organization and corporate sales division.

The loss of Borders would be devastating for the publishing industry as there would be half as much shelf space for books and thus decreasing the chances publishers will take on new and innovative writers.

Source: Publishers Weekly.

Jane Litte is the founder of Dear Author, a lawyer, and a lover of pencil skirts. She self publishes NA and contemporaries (and publishes with Berkley and Montlake) and spends her downtime reading romances and writing about them. Her TBR pile is much larger than the one shown in the picture and not as pretty. You can reach Jane by email at jane @ dearauthor dot com


  1. MeezerGrrrl
    Jun 03, 2008 @ 15:31:05

    156 jobs in Ann Arbor. On top of Pfizer pulling out their R & D operations by the end of this year.

    It seems that Ann Arbor, and Michigan in general, cannot win no matter what they do.

    I wonder how any of these cutbacks are affecting the new concept store that they opened earlier this year – the one where you could get e and audiobooks downloaded to your player on the spot.

    I remember the original Borders on State street – when B&N ruled the college textbook world, except for the really eclectic stuff (which could be found at Shaman Drum – about 4 doors down from Borders).

    That store was great (as was Arial’s in New Paltz, NY, another vestige of the past). Nice staff, great selection, a funky escalator to get to the second floor. It was a true independent bookstore at that point in time.

    And while I miss the independent Borders of 20 years ago, I agree that the loss of the entire company would be a really not good thing for publishing, across the board.

    I’m not wild about buying books at a big box store. But I’m not wild about buying books from Walmart,either. And despite the fact that I have a B&N membership, it rarely gets used these days. For whatever reason, the majority of my new book purchases come from Borders. It’s a constant in my world.

    All of the above is a very winding and maudlin way of stating that I agree, completely.

  2. Angela James
    Jun 03, 2008 @ 16:48:14

    What a scary time for Borders employees in particular, but really much of publishing in general. I hope those employees can find work quickly, I really feel for people who lose their jobs like this.

  3. (Jān)
    Jun 03, 2008 @ 18:05:14

    It would be a serious blow to the sales of graphics novels as well, since Borders is the brick and mortar store where they have greatest shelf presence.

    I do wish all the employees luck. How horrible for them. I know the numbers say the economy still has positive growth, but some things about it really suck.

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