Barnes & Noble's shares are skyrocketing today following its announcement of a strategic partnership with Microsoft.
The company's stock soared in early trading to $26, nearly doubling last week's closing price of $13.68. Since then, investors have started to cool, though not by much: as of this writing, the company's shares are up 63 percent to $22.29.
Under the terms of their partnership, Microsoft and Barnes & Noble will own part of a new company, currently known as Newco until a final name can be determined. Microsoft gave Barnes & Noble $300 million for a 17.6 percent equity stake in Newco, leaving the remaining 82.4 percent ownership to the bookseller. Newco, according to the companies, will focus on Barnes & Noble's Nook digital and college businesses.
To sweeten the pot a bit for Microsoft, Barnes & Noble will include its Nook digital bookstore with Windows 8, the software giant's next-generation operating system that launches later this year. The companies have also agreed to end their bitter patent litigation by forming a "royalty-bearing license under Microsoft's patents for its Nook e-reader and Tablet products."
Despite excitement on the Barnes & Noble side, Microsoft's stock has hardly moved, rising only 2 cents to $32 per share.