Wiley is to buy courseware and adaptive technology provider Knewton. The deal, for an undisclosed sum, is expected to conclude at the end of this month (May 2019).
Knewton, headquartered in New York, has produced the Alta courseware platform, which delivers Open Education Resource (OER) content to more than 300 colleges and universities, with course offerings in subjects areas including maths, chemistry and economics. Wiley said the acqusition of Alta would "accelerate Wiley's position in the rapidly-growing affordable courseware market".
Wiley president and c.e.o. Brian Napack said: "The Knewton team have long been pioneers in digital and data-driven learning and now they are leading the way in the delivery of powerful, affordable courseware. The Alta platform's proven ability to drive outcomes at affordable price points is right on target with what the market is demanding."
He added: "The demand has never been greater for courseware that addresses two critical needs in education - outcomes and affordability. The addition of Knewton's technology capabilities and the Alta platform to Wiley's portfolio of leading content, learning platforms, and business models enhances our position as a leader in the high-demand, career-focused markets where Wiley chooses to play. Further, it enhances Wiley's position as the high-impact education partner for our unmatched network of university and corporate clients."
Knewton c.e.o. Brian Kibby said: "Wiley is a company that brings global scale, a legacy of integrity, and a commitment to lifelong learning, research and innovation, and joining the Wiley family fulfills our vision to put achievement within reach for all."
Knewton's adaptive learning technology has been used by education companies including Pearson, which invested in the company but reportedly has been "phasing out" the partnership in favour of developing in-house adaptive learning capacity.
The Wiley buy comes shortly after Cengage c.e.o. Michael Hansen also stressed that affordable content delivered through digital platforms would be a key element of the offer from the merged Cengage/McGraw-Hill.