Tuesday, August 31, 2004

ProQuest Solidifies Move into ERM Space - and Beyond?

We note with great interest the Library Journal's coverage of ProQuest's purchase of Serials Solutions, a highly respected supplier of tools to help libraries search and manage electronic content collections more effectively. Serials Solutions is moving into the Electronic Resource Management space including federated search capabilities, which combined with their current capabilities makes it a great choice for ProQuest to position itself more effectively as a solutions provider for the library community. But is this where it will stop? The Article Linker, for example, provides a great general infrastructure for deploying OpenURL solutions across an enterprise - or beyond. When you look at how ProQuest has positioned itself with numerous innovators trying to bridge the gap between subscription database content and open Web content, and then look at how it is positioning itself for the institutional space, one wonders whether ProQuest may be positioning itself for a more direct assault on solving the problems of premium content access in more inclusive and open environments as well as for established libraries. Library patrons would certainly benefit if this is the case but it will be interesting to see how the ProQuest business model unfolds with this acquisition.
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