From The Chicago Tribune:
Westchester [IL]-based Follett, best known for selling books and other materials to schools, colleges, bookstores, students and K-12 libraries, on Monday announced what it said was the biggest deal in its 142-year history by buying Baker & Taylor, a provider of books, video and music products to public libraries worldwide.[Clip]
Baker & Taylor, based in Charlotte, N.C., had been put up for sale by its New York-based private equity owner, Castle Harlan, which has owned the company since 2006.
Follett said the deal would boost its revenues from about $2.6 billion to $3.6 billion, make it a major player in public libraries and raise its profile outside of North America.
Ray Griffith, Follett chief executive, said that, before the deal, his company generated about 1 percent of its revenues outside of North America; in contrast, markets outside of North America make up almost a third of the sales of Baker & Taylor, which serves 120 countries, including the United Kingdom, Australia and New Zealand. Baker & Taylor also serves Southeast Asia and is starting to move into the Middle East.
Terms weren’t disclosed.
Read the Complete Chicago Tribune Article
George F. Coe, Baker & Taylor’s President and Chief Executive Officer, will continue to lead the business as Follett Group President, Baker & Taylor and Follett School Solutions, reporting directly to Griffith. “George brings decades of industry leadership and relationships to Follett that will benefit our own school library and PreK-12 business as well,” added Griffith.
Coe joined Baker & Taylor in 2000, and was instrumental in developing Baker & Taylor’s Customized Library Services, Digital Media and eContent Platform Delivery Services and outsourcing capabilities in Collection Development Services.
Note: Video Begins with Intro by Follett Executives