Protecting your library amidst the Swets crisis

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We have received many emails and phone calls from both librarians and publishers regarding the bankruptcy of Swets. Swets has long been a competitor of ours. They have been an honourable and professional organisation with many astute and gifted personnel who have worked hard to perform the complex services necessary for our service business. We express our sympathy for many long-term personnel impacted by their bankruptcy. As natural change occurs during these times, EBSCO hopes that we can be a landing place for some of the folks who are out of work as a result of this situation.

Despite the difficult times for so many, we have to move forward. We've learned from similar situations in the past that it is paramount for librarians to understand the potential for lost subscriptions and monies, and in order to avoid any further hardship – know that we must act quickly. The positive news is that there is still time for librarians to make alternative arrangements regarding the renewal of their 2015 e-packages, e-journals and print subscriptions.

EBSCO is ready to help customers. We have the capacity to help. We have the scale, global footprint and comprehensiveness to assist customers. We have regional offices located across the globe and have already established transition teams in each office to coordinate our approach in each region. In addition to working with local customers, our transition teams have a direct line to our headquarters, which will work directly with publishers to ensure as smooth a transition of orders and payments to publishers as possible. We have already been in contact with many of the top publishers discussing the best approach to handle this transition. Both EBSCO and the publishers have as their main goal to avoid disruption in service to customers and ensure the security of their payments. In order to ensure this, transitions must begin quickly.

Librarians and publishers are rightly concerned with the financial stability of their partners. We at EBSCO expect customers and publishers to regularly verify their partners’ financial situation in order to protect their interests. We want to assure you that EBSCO continues to be financially very strong, and we offer as evidence third-party verification by the financial rating service Dun and Bradstreet. EBSCO continues to be rated 5A1 by Dun and Bradstreet – its highest possible rating. Their rating is described as follows:

'The Financial Strength Indicator is calculated using either the Net Worth or Issued Capital of the Subject Company. If both figures are available, then the Net Worth is always used to calculate the Financial Strength.' In the case of EBSCO, '5A' is 'Based on Net Worth' and tops the list of approximately 30 tiers of rating.

In terms of the suffix of this rating (in EBSCO's case the '1'), D&B refers to this as 'The Condition Code or Risk Indicator'. Per the D&B web site, 'This is calculated by taking into account key items within the Business Information report which are used to predict the likelihood of a business failure.' The site offers a more detailed description of each numerical indicator, including the 'strong condition (1)' that EBSCO receives: 'Strong Condition ( 1 ) -- This is assigned to companies of undoubted credit standing and financial strength.'

EBSCO has continued to reinvest in its service teams, and as a result, we are confident we are well positioned to assist libraries that may find themselves caught in this unfortunate current turmoil.

Again, given the timing of the recent news, time is of the essence and librarians should act quickly to transfer orders in order to ensure continuity of access to electronic and print content. If EBSCO can be of help to your library to ensure that you maintain e-package, e-journal and print subscription access and optimal support, please contact your EBSCO representative, or find the contact information for the specific office in your area and let us know how we may be of service to you.

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