The growth of digital products at Newgen’s K–12 education unit has been dramatic during the pandemic. “We have rapidly reskilled our K–12 and English language teaching [ELT] project managers, designers, and editorial staff to enable them to work across the myriad platforms and workflows involved in bringing digital projects to life,” says Jo Bottrill, managing director of the U.K. and U.S. operations. “We also launched a separate English language learning [ELL] unit in September to emphasize ELL and ELT content, which is so important to our publishing clients and the learners.”

Publishers are taking pure digital projects to the market more confidently, a shift driven by considerable demand from learners, teachers, and parents, Bottrill says. “Printed resources remain successful where they support self-learning and revision, with the backup of online assessment and test-bank materials,” he says. “Since digital projects are often more complex, being multi-format and multi-platform, investing in digital project management skills remains a focus in our company.”

The M&A activities across the industry have brought about more conversion or repurposing projects. “We have converted backlists for several large publishers and prepared the content for incorporation into new publishing platforms, including our content distribution platform Nova,” Bottrill says. “This process often involves content and metadata from myriad sources, including print PDFs, ePubs, hard copies, and fully structured XML. Our tools, including SilkEvolve, allow us to do the work very efficiently and at scale.”

Meanwhile, the company’s DigitalWorks division is busy providing digital marketing, design, and development services, as well as content distribution strategies. “The team creates and promotes brands as well as providing ongoing digital marketing services,” Bottrill says. “Combining these services with our Nova publishing platform, for instance, gives publishers the edge in making their content more discoverable in new markets. The Newgen team also offers services ranging from website audits to accessible site development. We partner with publishers to assess their outputs and optimize processes from the very beginning so that all systems and workflows can be designed with accessibility in mind. This isn’t just an issue of compliance but one of opening up new markets and ensuring that the content is available to the widest possible community of readers.”

Bottrill sees huge growth opportunities in the coming years across the K–12 and academic markets, with ample room for product innovation and new distribution models, especially to the all-important library market. “We focus on supporting publishers in scaling up their operations quickly and efficiently,” Bottrill says. “Increasingly, this will see Newgen KnowledgeWorks providing more value-added services, such as content commissioning, writing, development, and acquisitions support.”

Back to Main Feature