Just months after rolling out its newly redesigned search and discovery platform, ProQuest announced January 6 that it has acquired e-book pioneer ebrary, setting the stage for the company’s plans to offer greater depth of access to content from a growing variety of sources and media types. The agreement adds a pool of a quarter-million e-books to ProQuest’s offerings and enables users to search seamlessly across multiple formats and into greater historical depth.
“This expansion gives end users rich, frictionless, and powerful ability to get whatever research they need,” Proquest CEO Marty Kahn told American Libraries. Historically, content providers have been technologically constrained to offering siloed content, Kahn explained. “The silos don’t make any sense in 2011,” he continued, calling them artifacts of old technologies.
“[Before the merger] we didn’t have a very good way of presenting books, showing books,” Kahn said, calling it a “critical failure,” which led the company to the acquisition.
ebrary founders Christopher Warnock and Kevin Sayar will remain to lead the business in its Palo Alto, California, headquarters.
“ebrary is extremely excited to become a part of ProQuest,” said Christopher Warnock, CEO of ebrary, in ProQuest’s January 6 press release. “There is tremendous synergy between our products and services as well as our teams. Together, we know that we can provide best-of-kind services to libraries worldwide and the users they serve.”
“This is the next chapter for ebrary,” said Kevin Sayar, ebrary president, in the January 6 press release. “We’re looking forward to collaborating in ways that will inspire entirely new information solutions and captivate new users.”
Kahn explained that the major e-book acquisition was an “important step forward” for the company and what it is able to offer the library community and end users, but also emphasized that the company was looking at continuing to make similar acquisitions. “This is by no means the end of this,” he said.