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Innovative Interfaces, Inc.

Connect to the Innovative Interfaces, Inc. Web site

5850 Shellmound Way
Emeryville, California 94608-1901
United States
Toll free: 800-878-6600
Phone: 510-655-6200
Fax: 510-450-6350
Web site:

Board of Directors

  • J. Steven Young -- Board of Directors Chairman (representing HGGC)
  • Rich Lawson -- Board of Directors (representing HGGC)
  • Paul Barber -- Board Member (representing JMI Equity)
  • Jacob H. Hodgman -- Board Member
  • Bert Winemiller -- Acting Chief Executive Officer


  • Bert Winemiller -- Acting Chief Executive Officer
  • Sandy Curry -- Chief Financial Officer
  • Leif Pedersen -- Senior Vice President of Product Management, R&D, and Marketing
  • Bill Schickling -- Senior Vice President of Global Sales
  • Gene Shimshock -- Vice President, Global Marketing
  • Hilary Newman -- Vice President, Customer Engagement
  • Marina Keating -- Vice President of Professional Services
  • Ed Hudson -- Vice President of Global Human Resources
  • Mike Hampson -- Vice President of Recurring Revenue
  • Doug Randall -- Vice President of Product Technology

Company Ownership

Innovative Interfaces is privately owned by HGGC (formerly Huntsman Gay Global Capital) and JMI Equity.

Library automation systems

Innovative Interfaces, Inc. offers the following Integrated Library Systems:

  • Sierra (1740 libraries, 3814 facilities in
    Public libraries: 1195
    Academic libraries: 409
    School libraries: 9
    31 libraries have migrated away from this system.
  • Millennium (1003 libraries, 2079 facilities in
    Public libraries: 259
    Academic libraries: 522
    School libraries: 18
    2105 libraries have migrated away from this system.
  • Polaris (1393 libraries, 3243 facilities in
    Public libraries: 1223
    Academic libraries: 64
    School libraries: 31
    77 libraries have migrated away from this system.
  • Virtua (225 libraries, 490 facilities in
    Public libraries: 21
    Academic libraries: 133
    School libraries: 1
    64 libraries have migrated away from this system.

A total of 9626 library facilities included in use an ILS provided by Innovative Interfaces, Inc..

Innovative Interfaces, Inc. offers an OpenURL Link Resolver:

  • WebBridge used in 79 libraries, 204 facilities in

Corporate Chronology

Dec 22, 2014   Innovative Interfaces reports 495 libraries live on Sierra and a total of 560 contracts signed.
Jun 1, 2014   Innovative Interfaces acquires VTLS.
Mar 31, 2014   Innovative Interfaces acquires Polaris Library Systems.
Dec 31, 2013   Innovative reports 336 total installations of Sierra for the Library Systems Report.
Feb 1, 2013   Huntsman Gay Global Capital and JMI Equity purchase remaining shares of Innovative Interfaces.
Aug 27, 2012   Kim Massana named as Chief Executive Officer.
May 4, 2012   Bloomfield Township Public Library becomes the first public library to place Sierra into production.
Apr 17, 2012   Hillsdale College in Michigan first library to place Sierra into production.
Mar 1, 2012   Huntsman Gay Global Capital and JMI Equity make strategic investments in Innovative Interfaces, Inc. and SkyRiver.
Apr 25, 2011   Innovative announces Sierra Services Platform development.
Aug 9, 2010   Neil Block becomes president of Innovative Interfaces, Inc..
May 26, 2006   Innovative Interfaces launches Encore discovery interface.
Oct 16, 2001   Jerry Kline purchases the outstanding shares of the company from co-founder Steve Silberstein.
Apr 30, 1997   Innovative acquires SLS.
Aug 1995   Innovative launches its first Web-based online catalog.
Oct 15, 1992   Bob Walton Joins Innovative Interfaces Inc. as Executive Vice President.
1992   Innovative opens office in the United Kingdom.
1991   Innovative develops INN-Reach system.
1989   Innovative interfaces develops Circulation Module for INNOPAC.
Sep 1987   Innovative moves headquarters to Berkeley, CA.
1987   Innovative interfaces develops online catalog module for INNOPAC.
Jan 1986   SLS formed as a private company.
1985   Innovative Interfaces develops Serials Control Module.
Jan 1982   Innovative launches INNOVACQ SYSTEM 100.
1978   Innovative Interfaces develops OCLC-CLSI interface.
1978   Innovative Interfaces, Inc. founded by Jerry Kline and Steve Silberstein.
1969   South West Academic Libraries Co-operative Mechanisation Project founded.

Selected Articles from Library Technology Guides

The following are a sample of articles related to the major events in the corporate history of Innovative Interfaces, Inc., or you can view all articles related to the company from Library Technology Guides.

Breeding, Marshall, Smart Libraries Newsletter (May 2014). Innovative Interfaces acquires Polaris Library Systems

In a move that further consolidates the library automation industry, Innovative Interfaces, Inc. has purchased Polaris Library Systems. Innovative is one of the largest companies in the industry, with an international presence and customers from all types of libraries. The acquisition significantly strengthens its presence in the US public library arena because of Polaris’s success in winning the majority of municipal library procurements in recent years.

Breeding, Marshall, Smart Libraries Newsletter (April 2013). Innovative Interfaces Absorbs SkyRiver and Withdraws Lawsuit Against OCLC

In a major shift in strategy reflecting a more collaborative style of its new ownership and management, Innovative interfaces has withdrawn the lawsuit it filed against OCLC in July 2010. SkyRiver Technologies, the sister company and lead plaintiff of the suit, has been absorbed into Innovative Interfaces, which will integrate the SkyRiver cataloging service into its product offerings.

Breeding, Marshall, Smart Libraries Newsletter (March 2013). VTLS Moves to Open Skies

VTLS launched a new product suite, called VTLS Open Skies, positioned as a library services platform. A major step for VTLS, this new strategy takes the most successful components in the current arsenal of technologies and products and rebuilds them into a comprehensive platform for the management and access to library resources.

Breeding, Marshall, Smart Libraries Newsletter (March 2013). Innovative Interfaces Ownership Update

Smart Libraries Newsletter has previously reported on the majority acquisition of Innovative Interfaces, Inc. and SkyRiver Technologies by a pair of private equity firms, Huntsman Gay Global Capital and JMI Equity. In the initial transaction, company cofounder Jerry Kline sold the majority of the company, but retained a stake and served as the chairman of a newly constituted Board of Directors. In a subsequent transaction that closed the end of January 2013, Kline divested his remaining shares to the investment firms. Huntsman Gay and JI Equity now own 100 percent of Innovative Interfaces and SkyRiver. No information is publicly available regarding financial details such as the valuation of the company or the portion of shares retained by Kline following the initial transaction. Kline also has resigned from the company's board of directors, having divested his ownership and concluding his strategic and operational involvement.

Breeding, Marshall, Smart Libraries Newsletter (October 2012). New Executive Leadership at Innovative Interfaces

Innovative Interfaces, Inc. has appointed Kim Massana as its new Chief Executive Officer, effective upon the announcement on August 27, 2012. Jerry Kline continues as Chairman and Neil Block as President.

Breeding, Marshall, Smart Libraries Newsletter (April 2012). Innovative Interfaces Joins the Private Equity Club

Innovative Interfaces, one of the veteran companies of the library automation industry, has been one of the major holdouts in the wave of private equity investments that has reshaped the library automation industry over the last six years. The company has remained under the sole ownership of its co-founder Jerry Kline. That position now changes as a pair of private equity firms, Huntsman Gay Global Capital and JMI Equity have made strategic investments in Innovative Interfaces, Inc. and its sister company SkyRiver Technology Solutions. Following the transaction Kline retains partial equity in the company and will serve as the Chairman of the company's reconstituted Board of Directors and will continue involvement in the leadership of the company. Rich Lawson, co-founder and Managing Partner of Huntsman Gay serves as Vice Chairman and JMI Equity will hold a seat on the new Board. No changes in the executive management of Innovative or SkyRiver are planned.

(March 1, 2012). Library technology and services leader Innovative Interfaces announces strategic investment from Huntsman Gay Global Capital and JMI Equity

Innovative Interfaces, Inc. announced that it has received a strategic investment from Huntsman Gay Global Capital, a leading middle market private equity firm, and JMI Equity, a leading growth equity firm focused on investing in growing software, internet, business services and healthcare IT companies. Innovative Founder and Chairman Jerry Kline will continue to be directly involved in the Company’s overall operation as Chairman of the Board and shareholder of the Company. SkyRiver Technology Solutions, a provider of library metadata, also owned by Kline, received investment on the same terms. Financial terms of the investment were not disclosed.

Breeding, Marshall, Smart Libraries Newsletter (March 2012). Innovative Interfaces: Sierra, Encore, and Electronic Resource Management

Innovative Interfaces continues to build interest in its new Sierra platform. The company also launched its new Decision Center product, and announced new releases of Encore and Content Pro.

Breeding, Marshall, Smart Libraries Newsletter (October 2010). New Management at Innovative Interfaces

Innovative Interfaces, Inc. has named a new President to lead the operations of he company. Effective August 2010, Neil Block, formerly Vice President for Worldwide Sales, advances to the role of President responsible for all divisions of he company. Jerry Kline, who co-founded Innovative Interfaces in 1978, owns the company and will continue to serve as its Chairman.Serials Solutions has also seen a major transition in its executive management. ProQuest announced that Michael Gersch had been appointed as the General Manager of Serials Solutions and as an Executive Vice President of ProQuest.

Breeding, Marshall, (May 3, 2010). Encore Synergy Launched for Article Discovery—A New Search Model

Following the January 2010 announcement by Innovative Interfaces ( that its Encore discovery platform would be enhanced to include new article integration capabilities (, the company has launched Encore Synergy. This new enhanced version of Encore uses dynamic web services interoperability with content providers to layer access to articles into search results.

Breeding, Marshall, Smart Libraries Newsletter (May 2011). Innovative Interfaces to Launch Sierra: A New-Generation Automation Platform

Innovative Interfaces has joined the fray of library automation vendors launching new-generation library automation platforms. With Innovative's new system, dubbed Sierra, they aim to offer the depth of functionality equivalent to their current Millennium ILS. This system leverages current technology architectures that include open source components, with fullfeatured API bundles that enable greater extensibility and flexibility in the way that libraries make use of the system.

Breeding, Marshall, Smart Libraries Newsletter (July 2006). Innovative to introduce Encore

Innovative Interfaces announced it’s developing Encore, a next-generation library interface, or discovery services platform, which is designed to provide a more unified approach to finding information resources.

Breeding, Marshall, Smart Libraries Newsletter (May 2006). Innovative undaunted

Innovative Interfaces, second ranked company in the industry after SirsiDynix, has delivered its own steady stream of accomplishments so far this year. Recent sales of the Millennium ILS include the Oakland Public Library in California, Texas State University—San Marcos in Texas, Jinan University in China, Bibliothèque Méjanes in France, and the Université François-Rabelais de Tours Information Services also in France.

Breeding, Marshall, Smart Libraries Newsletter (June 2005). Innovative wins Virginia Tech

Virginia Tech, the original development site for the VTLS automation system, announced that will it migrate its libraries to Millennium from Innovative Interfaces.With this selection, Innovative shores up its lead among the prestigious members of the Association of Research Libraries to 37 out of the 123 total.

(October 16, 2001). Innovative announces transition in Ownership

Innovative Interfaces announced that Jerry Kline, co-founder and CEO, has reached an agreement to purchase the outstanding shares of the company from co-founder Steve Silberstein. Upon closing of the transaction, which is expected by the end of the year, Kline will assume full ownership of the company.

Library Systems Newsletter (June 1997). Innovative purchases SLS

Innovative Interfaces, Inc., purchased SLS Information Systems of Great Britain. SLS has over 700 installations in Europe, including more than 50 in academic libraries. Its primary product is Libertas. SLS was owned by 16 UK universities. Innovative purchased all of the outstanding stock for cash. The deal includes subsidiaries in Scandinavia (Stockholm) and Spain (Madrid) . SLS currently has a staff of 46 people.

Library Systems Newsletter (January 1996). Innovative has record year

Innovative Interfaces had a record year in 1995, signing 100 new-name customers during the year, including 11 academic research libraries and 20 public libraries.

Library Systems Newsletter (September 1993). OhioLink system up and running

OhioLINK is the first in which all activity of the separate local library systems is recorded and displayed immediately in the statewide union catalog. The OhioLINK INNOPAC statewide union catalog went online for the public on November 11, 1992, with 2.4 million bibliographic records from six university libraries, including: Case Western Reserve, Bowling Green, University of Cincinnati, Miami University, Central State University and Wright State University.

Library Systems Newsletter (July 1993). Innopac enters the European market

The European University Institute's recent installation of the INNOPAC library automation system marks the entry of Innovative Interfaces, Inc., into the European market. Innovative Interfaces systems are now installed in more than 340 libraries in six countries, including the U.S., Canada, Australia, Taiwan, Japan, and Italy.

Library Systems Newsletter (November 1992). Bob Walton joins Innovative Interfaces, Inc.

Bob Walton will join Innovative Interfaces, Inc. as Executive Vice President and will serve as the company's Chief Financial Officer, including responsibility for marketing, sales, and administration.

Innovative Interfaces, Inc. News

Wednesday Nov 25, 2015

All 730 Press Releases from Innovative Interfaces, Inc.

10 most recent items:

November 12, 2015. Innovative provides another choice for RFID integration with D-Tech. Innovative announced the successful implementation of the Sierra Item Status API at Robbins Library in Arlington, Massachusetts. The integration between Sierra and RFID technology from D-Tech International USA allows patrons to check in, check out, and renew RFID-tagged items with Innovative’s Express Lane self-check. Robbins Library patrons can also process items from other members of the Minuteman Library Network in the same transaction as local books and media. <<more>>

September 23, 2015. North Liberty Community Library (IA) selects the Polaris ILS and Polaris Leap. Innovative announced that North Liberty Community Library in Iowa has selected the Polaris ILS and Polaris Leap - a browser-based tool that offers key public services workflows in the stacks or outside the library. NLCL has over 50,000 items in its collection <<more>>

September 11, 2015. Innovative commits to library success with four strategic goals. Innovative announced its investment in four strategic goals: Library Success, Employee Success, Product Leadership, and Library Partnership. The company provides industry-leading solutions to more than 2,400 library systems with more than 9,500 libraries, spanning the globe in 66 countries. Innovative’s 425 employees provide a depth of talent unmatched elsewhere, with more than 120 librarians on staff who understand the demands placed on libraries every day. The company is also a leader in installed systems among members of the Association for Research Libraries and the Urban Library Council. <<more>>

September 1, 2015. Napa County Library (CA) selects the Polaris ILS and Polaris Leap, will join LINK+. Innovative announced that Napa City-County Library in northern California has selected the Polaris ILS and Polaris Leap--the responsive-design Web client that performs key library workflows on tablets and laptops. NCCL has a collection size of 150,000 and an annual circulation of over 1 million items. NCCL is also joining the ranks of the LINK+ resource-sharing consortium, which is powered by Innovative’s INN-Reach consortial borrowing system. As a member, NCCL will have access to materials from over 60 academic and public libraries that hold over 11 million items. NCCL is replacing a Carl.X system by TLC. <<more>>

August 28, 2015. Burlington County Library System (NJ) selects Polaris ILS and Polaris Leap. Innovative announced today that Burlington County Library System (BCLS) in New Jersey has selected the Polaris ILS and Polaris Leap, a browser-based tool that offers key public services workflows in the stacks or outside the library. BCLS holds over 750,000 volumes and conducts over 2 million circulation transactions each year. The Library is migrating from a Horizon® system provided by SirsiDynix. <<more>>

August 20, 2015. Innovative executive wins University of North Texas distinguished alumni award. Hilary Newman, Innovative’s VP of Global Partnerships and Customer Engagement, has won the Distinguished Alumni Award from the University of North Texas (UNT) College of Information. This annual award is presented to graduates for outstanding accomplishment in the field of library and information studies and contributions to the College of Information. A graduate of the College of Information with a Masters in Library Science, Ms. Newman has applied this knowledge at Innovative since 1995. <<more>>

August 13, 2015. Innovative announces availability of Sierra API Release 2.0. Innovative announced that the second set of REST APIs for the Sierra Library Services Platform is now in general release. As with the initial API release, Sierra API Release 2.0 provides access to Sierra data and metadata, allowing libraries and commercial partners to create seamless integrations and applications that benefit library patrons and staff. The new release provides transactional APIs for managing holds and patron accounts. In addition, Release 2.0 expands data access to include branch information and authority records. Interactive and reference documentation for this release is available on the recently-launched Innovative developer sandbox at <<more>>

August 8, 2015. SkyRiver adds 3.5 million Records from the British Library. SkyRiver, Innovative's cataloging utility product, now makes available over 3.5 million records from the British Library. This rich metadata, known as the British National Bibliography, reflects the publishing activity of the UK and Ireland and includes print and electronic publications. With this new content, the SkyRiver database now exceeds 60 million full, unique records. <<more>>

August 6, 2015. Alexander Mitchell Public Library (SD) selects the Polaris ILS. Alexander Mitchell Public Library in South Dakota has selected the Polaris ILS and Leap, a browser-based tool that offers key public services workflows in the stacks or outside the library. AMPL library holds nearly 100,000 items and has 230,000 circulation transactions each year. The Polaris ILS will replace an Aleph system provided by Ex Libris. <<more>>

August 4, 2015. Strong demand for Innovative products drives sales worldwide. Innovative announced that, in the first half of 2015, over 600 libraries selected Innovative library systems, which include the Sierra Library Services Platform and the Polaris ILS. These selections show the growing excitement around Innovative’s Open Library vision for libraries, known as the Open Library Experience. <<more>>