A message from Matti Shem Tov ProQuest’s CEO
As we start a new year, I would like to take a moment to thank our customers worldwide, reflect on the year we just ended, and look ahead to 2021 and beyond.
The ProQuest family is privileged to work with such a collaborative community of customers. In many ways 2020 was a remarkable year that demonstrated the power and agility of our community to respond to enormous challenges. Your innovation and spirit of cooperation – sharing resources, best practices, and advice to help each other adapt and transition through what may be a once-in-a-generation crisis – was truly inspiring. I’d like to personally thank you for all you have done this year and for your ongoing partnership.
At ProQuest, 2020 meant quickly pivoting to craft a wide set of tools, initiatives, and information hubs to help institutions react quickly and move to online-only environments. These programs included initiatives such as “E Now” to convert physical resources to electronic, unlimited access to Ebook Central holdings, new “pods” for sharing scholarly resources between libraries, video streaming for distance learning, product training resources, LibGuides, free access to COVID-related funding opportunities, and much more. You can find these resources under the ProQuest COVID-19 Assistance Hub, the Ex Libris COVID-19 Initiatives Center, and the Innovative Info Center.
Despite the year’s challenges, we maintained our pace of innovation, enhancing our products and continuously improving customer experiences. Like you, maintaining the health and wellbeing of our teams has been a top priority. We quickly adjusted our mode of operations and transitioned our entire global team to working remotely. We adapted development processes to working online, introduced e-only learning and onboarding programs, and invested in remote work infrastructure and equipment. I am proud of how our teams sprang into action so that ProQuest and Ex Libris could continue to deliver high levels of customer service and maintain high productivity.
Among our key developments of the past year: we continued to enhance ProQuest One Academic, the world’s largest multidisciplinary resource – which includes journals, videos, news, ebooks, dissertations and primary sources; we introduced TDM Studio, transforming text and data mining to enable researchers to gain new insights; our Rialto marketplace is now serving 65 libraries, empowering selectors and subject liaisons with seamless acquisition workflows; we launched Ex Libris Rapido, transforming resource sharing experience for patrons and library staff; Ex Libris Esploro research information management solution went live and is already helping over 20 institutions showcase their research output and expertise; and, we have released the first version of Innovative’s Vega Discover, to help public libraries deliver interconnected search results and boost users’ engagement with content.
We will maintain this pace in 2021 and beyond, positioning ProQuest and Ex Libris to better help libraries and higher-ed institutions respond to rapid change and new challenges – among them the shift to online and blended learning, unpredictable enrollment levels, and new budget pressures. Since 2015, when ProQuest and Ex Libris joined together, we have continually worked to improve how we serve our customers. In 2018, we combined the ProQuest and Ex Libris customer experience and support teams to create a unified Customer Experience & Operations team. Today, we combine the library Sales and Marketing organizations globally across ProQuest and Ex Libris into one team. With this unified approach we will be better able to effectively address institutions’ needs with holistic, innovative solutions.
I would also like to use this opportunity to extend a warm welcome to Oded Scharfstein, who joined us last week, succeeding Bar Veinstein as president of Ex Libris. Oded was part of the Ex Libris family for 14 years, starting as a product manager, leading the Asia Pacific team, and ultimately, serving as Chief Financial Officer until 2016.
Thank you again for all you have done in 2020. I’m looking forward to all of us emerging strong and thriving in 2021 and the years ahead!
January 13, 2021