Elsevier buys Mendeley

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The rumoured purchase of start-up Mendeley by publishing giant Elsevier has been confirmed. According to a statement on Mendeley's blog, 'Elsevier’s resources, partnerships, and reach in the academic, library, and professional community will enable us to accelerate our progress towards our vision. Our team will expand significantly over the next few years. Elsevier’s Scopus and ScienceDirect platforms will become seamlessly interoperable with Mendeley, creating a central discovery, workflow, and collaboration network for the global research community.'

When the acquisition was first rumoured earlier this year, it sparked angry reactions from the research community and spawned the #mendelete hash tag on Twitter - an attempt to encourage people to switch to other reference management platforms. Concerns raised to Research Information at the time were about the openness of the Mendeley platform and its potential tie-up with a publisher that many research institutions have attempted to boycott recently in protest at subscription prices.

Victor Henning of Mendeley in today's blog post commented: 'we are aware that – especially in the past year – the academic community has criticised Elsevier for some of its policies and positions. Our own relationship with Elsevier has been conflicted at times. Elsevier is a multi-faceted company with over 7000 employees, so it is impossible to put them into a single box. We were being challenged by some parts of the organisation over whether we intended to undermine journal publishers (which was never the case), while other parts of the organisation were building successful working relationships with us and even helped to promote Mendeley.'

He went on to say: 'Time and time again, Elsevier struck us as one of the most innovative and tech-savvy publishers out there,' adding, 'Elsevier is a large, complex organisation – to say the least! While not all of its moves or business models have been universally embraced, it is also a hugely relevant, dynamic force in global publishing and research. More importantly, we have found that the individual team members – the employees, editors, innovators, and tool developers we’ve worked with – all share our genuine desire to advance science. This is why we’re thrilled to join Elsevier and help shape its future.'

According to Olivier Dumon, managing director of academic and government markets for Elsevier, 'Mendeley will remain a separate platform with a distinctive brand — the favourite daily destination site of researchers to check updates on their network, collaborate with other researchers, access their stored content, get alerts to relevant research domains, and make progress on their workflow efficiency and research in general.'