Thomson Sells and Buys

Posted On May 16 2007 by

If you thought the world of Mergers & Acquisitions was hard to follow in the library systems marketplace, well buckle up for content providers. The Thomson Corporation has sold off its assets in Thomson Learning to Apax Partners and OMERS Capital Partners, for a total of about $7.75 billion in cash. (I love seeing “in cash.” . . . “Hey, can you break a trillion? I left my billions in my other wallet.”) The transaction includes Thomson Gale, Wadsworth, Delmar Learning, Brooks/Cole, and South-Western, and comes as no surprise since the intent was announced last fall. Details of the plan …


HodgePodge

Posted On Apr 19 2007 by

Nothing major really striking my fancy, but there has been a smattering of interesting news on the library technology front in the last couple of weeks. Free-gle Scholar Some scholarly societies are launching something that is either a counter to or a target for Google Scholar. Scitopia.org will launch this summer and include 3 million articles from 13 scholarly societies. The jury has not even gathered yet since it’s only April and the site will not launch until June, so I am left only to complain at this point that I don’t have any great love for press releases that …


Books More Digital

Posted On Mar 28 2007 by

I’ve always had a hard time explaining my position on e-books. Some of my esteemed colleagues are quick to point out the minor dent that e-books have made in overall book sales in this country and others. But when I started evangelizing about e-books back in the late 1990s, we were still talking about what I call the “curl-up factor.” I grew so tired of hearing people complain about not wanting to curl up with an e-book, or the inability to take an e-book to the beach, that as soon as I read either phrase in e-book commentary, I simply …


Another Big Buyout

Posted On Dec 16 2006 by

It’s the holiday season. What do you buy for the content provider who already has everything (or at least a strong stake in natural sciences, social sciences, technology, arts, and humanities)? Well, if you had $222 million you could have bought ProQuest Information and Learning (PQIL) for the Cambridge Information Group. But you probably don’t have that kind of cash lying around. No worries, CIG bought PQIL for itself. In a press release issued yesterday morning, CIG announced its intention to combine its subsidiary, Cambridge Scientific Abstracts (CSA), with the ProQuest division, which includes ProQuest, Chadwyck-Healey, UMI, Micromedia ProQuest, Serials …


Wiley Acquires Blackwell

Posted On Nov 29 2006 by

I finally broke down and created a “Mergers & Acquisitions” category, which if things continue will easily be one of the bigger categories on this blog. In a deal valued at over $1 billion, John Wiley & Sons has entered into a definitive agreement to acquire the outstanding shares of Blackwell Publishing (Holdings), Ltd. (Blackwell, Ltd., the library book vendor and retailer, remains a separate entity and is not part of the acquisition.) The two companies’ 2005 revenues combined were roughly $750 million. Rene Olivieri, CEO of Blackwell Publishing and Wiley’s Steve Smith, senior vice president of international development and …