An Interview with Steve Potash, CEO of Rakuten OverDrive, Published by Crain’s Cleveland Business
OverDrive, acquired by Japanese e-commerce company Rakuten Inc. in 2015, supplies digital books to 40,000 schools and libraries in 72 countries, leading to double-digit revenue percentage growth and over 215 million book downloads in 2017 alone.
Already dominating the U.S. library market — nearly 95% of national public libraries lend out ebooks and other electronic content via the company’s technology — OverDrive is also working to get textbooks onto students’ tablets and laptops for use in the classroom.
The interview itself consists of seven questions and answers. Here’s one of the exchanges.
Q. What is your company’s largest current area of growth?
A. (Potash): The K-12 education space is our most exciting area of hyper-growth. Our technology is being integrated into learning management systems to assess where a student is in their reading skills. We’re working with educators to make sure the right student has the right book, and to make access to books even more effective in many curriculum-based programs.
About Gary Price
Gary Price (email@example.com) is a librarian, writer, consultant, and frequent conference speaker based in the Washington D.C. metro area. He earned his MLIS degree from Wayne State University in Detroit. Price has won several awards including the SLA Innovations in Technology Award and Alumnus of the Year from the Wayne St. University Library and Information Science Program. From 2006-2009 he was Director of Online Information Services at Ask.com.