Cleveland, OH) - October 18, 2010 - OverDrive (www.overdrive.com), the leading global distributor of eBooks, audiobooks and digital content services to retailers, libraries, and schools, announced today that Insight Venture Partners, a leading private equity firm focused on technology companies, has made a major investment in the company. The investment, subject to regulatory approval, will provide additional resources and capital to help fuel the company's impressive growth.
Since its inception in 1986, OverDrive has pioneered the development of hosted solutions for eBooks and other digital media. OverDrive has long-term trusted partnerships with leading publishers including Random House, HarperCollins, Penguin, Hachette, McGraw-Hill, John Wiley, and hundreds of others. Today, OverDrive operates a comprehensive, secure digital content repository (Content Reserve) and fulfillment platform for eBooks, audiobooks, music, and video for a global network of more than 11,000 retailers, libraries, schools, and other digital channels.
"We are particularly excited about OverDrive's strong growth, market leadership, and commitment to customers," said Larry Handen, managing director at Insight Venture Partners. "Our investment coincides with the 20th consecutive quarter of continuous profitability. This is a tribute to the company's management team."
"Insight values OverDrive's partnerships with leading librarians, educators, publishers, and authors, and how we help them benefit from new business models and technologies for their eBook and digital content offerings," said Steve Potash, OverDrive founder and CEO. "The combination of Insight's focus on technology, software, and Internet markets, along with their vast financial and human capital resources, makes them an extraordinary partner to help advance OverDrive's mission of maximizing the value we provide to our publisher and channel partners."
OverDrive distributes one of the world's largest catalogs of eBooks, audiobooks and multimedia, with more than 500,000 premium copyrighted titles. The collection includes one of the world's largest catalogs of eBooks in the EPUB format, the open standard for eBooks developed by the International Digital Publishing Forum (IDPF). OverDrive will soon be releasing eBook applications for AndroidTM, iPhone®, and iPadTM, all of which will display EPUB eBooks in their native format and include multimedia support. By providing EPUB eBooks in their native format -- which requires no conversion to additional formats -- OverDrive simplifies the management and fulfillment processes for publishers, retailers, libraries, and consumers.
"We are big believers in the future of digital books and e-reading for library patrons, students and consumers," noted Peter Sobiloff, managing director at Insight Venture Partners, who, together with Larry Handen, will join OverDrive's board of directors. "We look forward to leveraging Insight's capital and network to help accelerate OverDrive's growth and expand its portfolio of solutions."
OverDrive continues to extend its international presence with the addition of new library and education partners in London, Dublin, Ankara, and Amsterdam. Leading online booksellers who recently went live with popular eBooks supplied by OverDrive include Gato Sabido (Brazil), Xue-Si (Taiwan), Avusa Retail (South Africa), and Papataka (Indonesia). These international booksellers join Borders.com, Barnesandnoble.com, BooksonBoard.com, LivrariaCultura.com.br, Waterstones.co.uk, WHSmith.co.uk, and dozens of other online retailers selling download audiobooks and/or eBooks supplied by OverDrive.