Wilmingtonbiz logo
Print
Retail

Downtown Bookstore Owner Retiring, Hopes Story Continues

By Cece Nunn, posted May 23, 2017
A reading nook at Two Sisters Bookery. The business, located at The Cotton Exchange in downtown Wilmington, is for sale. (Photo courtesy of Two Sisters Bookery)
A new chapter is in the works for a longtime Wilmington bookstore.

Two Sisters Bookery, at 318 Nutt St. in The Cotton Exchange, is for sale again, for the fourth time in the independent bookstore and gift shop's nearly 40-year history.

Current owner Barbara Galvin, who worked for Barnes & Noble for 15 years before buying Two Sisters Bookery in 2011, said she's ready to retire and spend some time traveling.

"It was my dream always to have my own book store, and I've loved every minute of it," Galvin said Tuesday.

The price for the business will be about $42,000, not including the store's inventory, said Joan Loch, a broker with MoMentum Companies, who is marketing the business for sale.

Loch said Galvin has built up the social media presence of Two Sisters Bookery, including Facebook posts that typically get anywhere from 500 to 1,800 views. Last year, Galvin launched a new website for the store. Independent booksellers rely on social media and other strategies to compete with national chain stores and online marketplaces, Loch said.

"Retail alone can be challenging, but in this day of technology, the bookstore and the independent bookstore owners are doing things a little bit different. They have a lot more author events and they also complement their business with gifts and accessories that are book-related or for the type of person who likes to read," Loch said.

The 1,250-square-foot space that Two Sisters Bookery occupies is leased and belongs to the owners of The Cotton Exchange, where the bookstore has been located since 1977, said Loch and Galvin.

According to news stories about previous sales, sisters Mary House and Wanda Cagiano bought the business in the 1990s, when it was called The Bookery and added "Two Sisters" to the name. Galvin bought the business from Brooks Preik, author of Haunted Wilmington and the Cape Fear Coast, and her daughter, Angela Carr.

Galvin's customer base includes tourists and regulars. When potential book buyers in the store say they can get a title online, Galvin's response is, "If you buy it right now, you have instant gratification." She also points out that 85 percent of the money the store makes stays in the local economy, including helping to feed the store's famous cat, an 8-year-old calico named Katie.

In addition to reader-friendly gifts, journals and popular books, Galvin also carries titles from local and regional authors.

"I hope they'll sell things here that they don't see in other places," Galvin said of whoever the new owner might be.

Galvin's Facebook post about the sale on Monday had already netted inquiries by Tuesday.

Owning the store, "would be a great job for someone who is a reader . . . when you open a book, you can be anywhere in the world. I try to give that feeling of excitement about reading to people," Galvin said.

Join The Discussion

Similar Stories

Ico insights

INSIGHTS

SPONSORS' CONTENT

Book On Business

Bob2017

The 2017 WilmingtonBiz: Book on Business is an annual publication showcasing the Wilmington region as a center of business.

Order Your Copy Today!
Print Only
$24.95 - Qty
Print + Excel File
$79.95 - Qty

In The Current Issue

New Plan: Exit Interview With O’Keefe

New Hanover County Planning Director Chris O’Keefe is leaving this month after 11 years in the top management post and 27 years as a county employee. His last day with New Hanover is July 21, and O’Keefe answered some questions recently about his time here.

NCino Inks International Deal With London Bank

Cloud banking company nCino announced in late June that its Bank Operating System has officially crossed the pond....

VA Clinic Opens In Brunswick County

As more military veterans retire in Brunswick County, the need for health care services has increased. To meet that need, the Fayetteville V...

Ico topnews Editor's Picks

UNCW Announces 2 New Online Business Master's Degrees

Christina Haley O'Neal - Jul 21, 2017

Local Real Estate Leaders Discuss Hurdles In Current Market

Cece Nunn - Jul 21, 2017 Trending News

WHQR Announces New Station Manager

Cece Nunn - Jul 20, 2017 Trending News

Developers Share Plans For Leland's Next Major Retail Center

Cece Nunn - Jul 20, 2017 Trending News
Services

Gierie Orthodontics

At Gierie Orthodontics our passion is creating beautiful smiles. Dr. Bill Gierie is committed to maximizing your esthetic potential through enhancing the appearance of the teeth and face. We strive to ...more

Ico trending Trending News

Ico newsinimages News in Pictures

Have a tip, pitch or guest column?  Send us a tip.

Gallery Galleries

Video Videos

Power Breakfast: Coach C.B. McGrath - June 2017
Wilmington's Most Intriguing People of 2016

Register to Continue Seeing Wilmington's Best Business Coverage!


There are three ways to register for free.

Sign in with LinkedIn, Facebook or create an account:



Already registered? Login here.

Your free registration includes:

  • Access to 10 articles per month on WilmingtonBiz.com
  • Email updates to stay informed on local business news
  • A mobile optimized website
  • Advanced notification of Business Journal events
  • Management of your digital and print subscriptions
Laptop iphone ipad