Leonard Riggio is the Founder and Chairman of Barnes & Noble, Inc. (NYSE: BKS), the world’s largest bookseller. The company employs approximately 26,000 booksellers at 630 retail stores nationwide. Mr. Riggio also founded Barnes & Noble College Booksellers, a Barnes & Noble Education company (NYSE: BNED) and a leading operator of college bookstores in the U.S., and GameStop (NYSE: GME), the world’s largest videogame retailer.
Leonard Riggio has been called "the Ted Turner of bookstores"-a mercurial maverick whose outsized risks have repeatedly drawn predictions of failure, even while he remade the industry in his image. One of the first book retailers to understand that the store is a stage and that retailing is great theater, Riggio made bookstores fun, turning them into modern village greens where people flock as much for entertainment value as the huge selection. It is that kind of marketing savvy, combined with a willingness to break the rules, that has helped make Riggio one of the most powerful and controversial figures in the book world.
Barnes Noble, Inc., is a Fortune 500 company, the largest retail bookseller in the United States, and a leading retailer of content, digital media and educational products in the country. The company operates 647 retail stores (as of August 1, 2015) in all 50 U.S. states.