|Dual-listed public limited company / Naamloze vennootschap|
|Traded as||LSE: REL, Euronext: REN, NYSE: ENL, NYSE: RUK|
Reed International PLC
|Founded||1993 (by merger)|
|Headquarters||London, United Kingdom and Amsterdam, Netherlands|
|Erik Engstrom (CEO)
Anthony Habgood (Chairman)
|Products||Publishing, academic and business publishing, trade fairs|
|Revenue||£6.035 billion (2013)|
|£1.749 billion (2013)|
|£1.110 billion (2013)|
Number of employees
|28 000 (2013)|
Reed Business Information
Reed Elsevier is an Anglo-Dutch multinational publishing and information company co-headquartered in London, United Kingdom and Amsterdam, Netherlands. It operates in the science, medical, legal, risk, marketing, financial, and business sectors. The Reed Elsevier group is a dual-listed company consisting of Reed Elsevier PLC (listed in London and New York) and Reed Elsevier NV (listed in Amsterdam and New York).
In 1965 Reed Group, as it was then known, became a conglomerate, creating its Decorative Products Division with the purchase of Crown Paints, Polycell and Sanderson's wallpaper and DIY decorating interests.
In 1970, Reed Group merged with the International Publishing Corporation and the company name was changed to Reed International Limited. The company continued to grow by merging with other publishers and produced high quality trade journals as IPC Business Press Ltd and women's and other consumer magazines as IPC magazines Ltd. The original family owners, the Reeds, were Methodists and encouraged good working conditions for their staff in the then-dangerous print trade.
In 1985 the company decided to rationalise its operations, focusing on publishing and selling off its other interests. Sanderson was sold to WestPoint Pepperell, Inc. of Georgia that year, while Crown Paint and Polycell were sold to Williams Holdings in 1987. The company's paper and packaging production operations were bundled together to form Reedpack and sold to private equity firm Cinven in 1988. It was later bought by Svenska Cellulosa Aktiebolaget.
In 1880, Jacobus George Robbers started a publishing company called NV Uitgeversmaatschappij Elsevier (Elsevier Publishing Company NV) to publish literary classics and the encyclopedia Winkler Prins. Robbers named the company after the old Dutch printers family Elzevir, which, for example, published the works of Erasmus in 1587. Elsevier NV originally was based in Rotterdam but moved to Amsterdam in the late 1880s.
Up to the 1930s, Elsevier remained a small family-owned publisher, with no more than ten employees. After the war it launched the weekly Elseviers Weekblad, which turned out to be very profitable. A rapid expansion followed. Elsevier Press Inc. started in 1951 in Houston, Texas, USA, and in 1962 publishing offices were opened in London and New York. Multiple mergers in the 1970s led to name changes, settling at Elsevier Scientific Publishers in 1979. In 1991, two years before the merger with Reed, Elsevier acquired Pergamon Press in the UK.
In February 2007, Reed Elsevier announced its intention to sell Harcourt, its educational publishing division. On 4 May 2007 Pearson, the international education and information company, announced that it had agreed to acquire Harcourt Assessment and Harcourt Education International from Reed Elsevier for $950m in cash. In July 2007, Reed Elsevier announced its agreement to sell the remaining Harcourt Education business, including international imprint Heinemann, to Houghton Mifflin Riverdeep Group for $4b in cash and stock.
In February 2008, shareholders of Choicepoint voted in favor of acquisition by Reed Elsevier for $4.1 billion. Choicepoint is an American data aggregation company with personal files on more than 220 million people in the US and Latin America. The acquisition was completed in September 2008.
In July 2009, Reed Elsevier announced its intention to sell most of its North American trade publications, including Publishers Weekly, Broadcasting & Cable, and Multichannel News, although it planned to retain Variety.
In September 2009 Reed Elsevier's Technology Division ('RETS'), who provide internal IT support across all business units, announced that European support services would be outsourced to the Indian firm HCL.
In April 2010, Reed Elsevier announced that it had sold 21 US magazines to other owners in recent months, and that an additional 23 US trade magazines, including Restaurants & Institutions, Hotels, and Trade Show Week would cease publication. The closures were mostly due to the weak economy including an advertising slump.
In February 2015 Reed Elsevier announced a change to modernise and simplify the corporate structure, share listings, and corporate entity names. RELX Group plc will be the new single group entity with RELX PLC for the London listed shareholding vehicle and RELX NV for the Amsterdam listed shareholding vehicle, effective 1 July 2015.
Reed Elsevier conducts its business through the following divisions:
ScienceDirect contains information about science, technology and medicine, Scopus is a database of research literature and quality web sources and Reed Business Information, Reed Elsevier's global Business division, is a provider of data services, business information and marketing solutions.
Reed Elsevier has been criticised for the high prices of its journals and services, especially Elsevier and LexisNexis. It has also supported SOPA, PIPA and the Research Works Act, although it no longer supports the last. Because of this, members of the scientific community have boycotted Elsevier journals. In January 2012, the boycott gained an online pledge and petition (The Cost of Knowledge) initiated by mathematician and Fields medalist Sir Timothy Gowers. The movement has received support from noted science bloggers, such as biologist Jonathan Eisen, and has been signed by thousands of scientists.
Elsevier charges an Article Publishing Charge for open-access publication of scholarly articles, but open-access articles have not always been correctly labelled as open access online, with webpages hosting them claiming "All rights reserved". Due to labelling problems with a third-party tool, Elsevier has mistakenly charged fifty users for permission to use open-access articles, and is investigating whether other users were incorrectly charged. These problems have persisted for over two years after being reported to Elsevier. As of March 2014, Elsevier says it is working on improving open-access labelling, and it is refunding fees charged for open-access articles. Legal action has been suggested by Peter Murray-Rust.
Digimarc, a company representing Elsevier, recently told the University of Calgary to remove articles published by faculty authors on university web pages; although such self-archiving of academic articles may be legal under the fair dealing provisions in Canadian copyright law, the university complied. Harvard University and the University of California, Irvine also received takedown notices for self-archived academic articles, a first for Harvard, according to Peter Suber.
Reed Elsevier collects, uses, and sells data on millions of consumers. It has settled a Federal Trade Commission action taken against it, for failure to provide reasonable security for a database containing names, current and prior addresses, dates of birth, drivers license numbers and Social Security numbers, amongst other data. This information was obtained from credit reporting agencies and other sources, and made available to purchasers through a password-secured website which permitted easy-to-guess passwords, allowing identity thieves to steal records on over quarter of a million people. This breach occurred through a recently purchased subsidiary, Seisint.
Members of the medical and scientific communities, which purchase and use many journals published by Reed Elsevier, agitated for the company to cut its links to the arms trade. Two UK academics, Dr. Tom Stafford of Sheffield University and Dr Nick Gill, launched petitions calling on Reed Elsevier to stop organising arms fairs. A subsidiary, Spearhead, organised defence shows, including an event where it was reported that cluster bombs and extremely powerful riot control equipment were offered for sale.
In February 2007, Richard Smith, former editor of the British Medical Journal, published an editorial in the Journal of the Royal Society of Medicine, arguing that Reed Elsevier's involvement in both the arms trade and medical publishing constituted a conflict of interest. He suggested that if academics began to disengage with Reed Elsevier, the company would be likely to end their arms fairs, as arms fairs only comprise a small proportion of their business.
On 1 June 2007, Reed Elsevier announced that they would be exiting the Defence Exhibition business during the second half of 2007.
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