Blackboard Inc.
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The Wall Street Journal is reporting that Blackboard, the company that everyone loves to hate, may be subject to takeover bids.  This is not an unexpected development, but it will have significant implications for higher education nonetheless.  As I write this, Blackboard’s stock is up around 15 points.  This means that someone, somewhere, thinks that higher education is a market worth investing in, which may be ironic for those working in the area right now, who mostly voice gloom and doom.

There are many unanswerable questions here: Who is bidding for Blackboard?  Who will win the battle?  What will be the path Blackboard will follow under new ownership?  And what will this mean for all the upstart companies that are coming into existence expressly to challenge Blackboard?

A Blackboard acquisition will be a transformative deal.  Stay tuned.

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Joseph Esposito

Joseph Esposito

Joe Esposito is a management consultant for the publishing and digital services industries. Joe focuses on organizational strategy and new business development. He is active in both the for-profit and not-for-profit areas.


4 Thoughts on "Blackboard May be the Target of a Takeover"

Very interesting. One of the possible outcomes in the evolving textbook (course materials) adoption market might very well be site licensing at the institutional level. Both Cengage and Pearson have relatively new institutional sales forces along with their traditional sales forces concentrating on faculty. Blackboard is a key component in an institutional course materials licensing strategy (libraries should also be thinking along those lines).

That 15 point bump might be due to Blackboard’s potential in the K-12 market, which many schools are eying as a way to help defray costs of traditional schooling by offering blended/hybrid courses.

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