Follett Corporation today announced it has acquired Baker & Taylor, LLC, the leading distributor of books, video and music products to public
libraries and institutions, and a major wholesaler to retailers worldwide. With combined sales of $3.6 billion, the two businesses will offer librarians, patrons, educators and students unprecedented access to the best curated physical and digital content wherever learning and
reading take place in the community.
Follett is a top provider of technology, services and print and digital content to PreK-12 libraries, schools and higher education institutions. Baker & Taylor, based in Charlotte, N.C., will continue to operate as before, serving customers through its existing management team and business operations.
“Acquiring Baker & Taylor marks a major milestone for Follett that expands the possibilities of our two businesses,” said Todd A. Litzsinger, Chairman of Follett. “Through our support of schools, public libraries, colleges, local bookstores and retailers, our teams are uniquely
positioned to help communities everywhere strengthen literacy and learning. On behalf of the Follett family, I’m excited and proud to welcome the Baker & Taylor team to Follett.”
“The capabilities, expertise, and technologies of Follett and Baker & Taylor are very complementary, making this a natural partnership of two trusted industry leaders,” said Ray A. Griffith, President and Chief Executive Officer of Follett. “Our unique insights, curated content and innovative services will help librarians and educators more effectively meet the evolving learning needs of their communities.”
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.
“This strategic combination brings together the two best teams in the public and school library sectors with capabilities uniquely focused on supporting lifelong learning,” said Coe. “With Follett’s commitment to education and strong financial ability to invest in Baker & Taylor, we expect to build on our long-term vision for content distribution and expand the flow of innovative products, programs and services for all of our customers worldwide.”
Follett also announced today that Nader Qaimari has been promoted to President of Follett School Solutions, reporting to Coe. Qaimari was named General Manager of Follett’s PreK-12 business in October of 2015.
In addition to providing customers access to curated content from thousands of publishers and sources, Follett and Baker & Taylor are recognized leaders in the delivery of library management and collection development technology tools to public and school libraries.
Baker & Taylor
Eventually, the company expects to leverage the best of these technologies and other capabilities to drive even greater innovation and value for public and school library, classroom, retail and college bookstore customers.
About Baker & Taylor | baker-taylor.com
Baker & Taylor is the premier worldwide distributor of books, digital content and entertainment products from approximately 25,000 suppliers to over 20,000 customers in 120 countries. The company offers cutting-edge digital media services and innovative technology platforms to thousands of publishers, libraries, schools and retailers worldwide. Baker & Taylor also offers industry leading customized library services and retail merchandising solutions. For more information, visit www.baker-taylor.com.
About Follett Corporation | Follett.com
For more than 140 years, Follett has been a trusted partner to preK-12 schools, colleges and campus bookstores, taking care of the critical details that make it easier for schools to run, teachers to teach, students to learn and fans to celebrate. A leading provider of education technology, services and physical and digital content, Follett currently works with 70,000 schools and operates more than 1,250 local campus stores and 1,600 virtual stores. With the 2016 acquisition of Baker & Taylor, LLC, Follett's reach also extends into the public library and global retail markets. Today Follett Corporation is the world's largest single source of books, entertainment products, digital content and multi-media for libraries, schools and retailers. Follett is a $3.6 billion privately held company headquartered in Westchester, Illinois.