With sales of its online test preparation materials to high school and college libraries growing fast, LearningExpress has established a new school and academic library sales office in Unity, Maine. Deborah Mod, who has worked in different sales capacities with Macmillan, Gale and Grolier, has been named director of the division but will stay based in New York. Cheryl Arute, formerly of Macmillan, is the manager of the Unity office. She oversees about 20 telemarketing reps, a number of whom had worked for Thorndike Press before the operation was consolidated into Gale. Barry Lippman, LearningExpress president, said the formation of the school and academic library sales force gives the company a sales team that complements its in-house public library sales group and retail sales distribution, which is handled by Delmar Learning.

LearningExpress now has more than 300 online practice tests and tutorial courses available on its Web site at LearningExpressLibrary.com. It also has a backlist of 250 books. The high school offerings are centered around SAT and AP online test prep materials. The college platform includes SAT guides plus practice tests for such academic tests as the GREs plus practice career tests like police department entrance exams. Lippman noted that the online materials are completely different from the book editions now sold to stores through Delmar.

Lippman said LearningExpress sales doubled in 2002, led by the growth in its online operations; online sales were three times higher than print sales last year even though book sales increased by 15%. In addition to growth to the school and college market, LearningExpress now has subscriptions with more than 3,000 library systems. The company has also found a niche distributing online library materials for other companies, including Delmar's eCourses program, the foreign language materials produced by the Rosetta Stone Language Library and courses developed by SmartThinking.