Borders Group, Inc. (NYSE: BGP) is an international book and music retailer based in Ann Arbor, Michigan. Borders is the second-largest bookstore chain in the United States (after Barnes & Noble), selling a wide variety of books, CDs, DVDs, periodicals, gifts and stationery. Some also have a coffee shop.
In 2008, Borders Group's total revenue was US$3.82 billion, of which $2.63 billion came from Borders Superstores, $2.00 billion from books, $480 million from Waldenbooks Specialty Retail, $622 million from alternative markets, $371 million from music/DVDs, and $284 million from periodicals.
As of 2009, there are 517 Borders stores in the United States, and approximately 466 stores in the Waldenbooks Specialty Retail segment, including Waldenbooks, Borders Express, Borders airport stores, and Borders Outlet. During the autumn and winter months, Borders also operates calendar stores and mall kiosks under the Day By Day Calendar Company name.
The original Borders bookstore was located in Ann Arbor, Michigan, where it was founded in 1971 by brothers Tom and Louis Borders during their undergraduate and graduate years at the University of Michigan. The Borders brothers' inventory system tailored each store's offerings to its community. A sister company, Book Inventory Systems (1976–1994), was founded to serve as a wholesaler for and provide the brothers' custom inventory system to regional independent bookstores such as John Rollins, Thackeray's, Schuler Books, and Joseph-Beth Booksellers. Until Borders Superstore expansion occurred in the early 1990s, BIS serviced more independent stores than Borders stores. Former Hickory Farms president Robert F. DiRomualdo was hired in 1989 to expand the company.
The first Borders bookshop, with a meager stock of used books, was located in two rooms above 209 State Street, north of the State Theater; curiously, these rooms' previous renter was one James "Iggy" Osterberg, who went on to become punk rock pioneer Iggy Pop. From there the brothers soon moved, briefly, to a tiny ground floor + mezzanine operation in the Maynard House apartment building, on the southwest corner of William and Maynard Streets.
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