September 6, 2000—Innovative Interfaces, a leading supplier of Web-based library automation systems, will install its first Millennium system in the United Arab Emirates at the American University of Sharjah. Millennium will replace the University's current OLIB 7 system, and a live date is planned for the early part of 2001.
The American University of Sharjah, founded in 1997, is a co-educational university modeled on U.S. institutions of higher education and developed in affiliation with the American University in Washington, DC.
Stephen Shorb, University Librarian, said "Following a detailed evaluation of the major library systems available, we selected Millennium for three key reasons. First, as we are a new university in the Middle East, there is an expectation for our technologies to be state-of-the-art, and we found that Innovative offered a system at the perfect stage of product development: mature enough to be highly reliable, yet new enough to incorporate the latest features. Millennium uses its advanced technology to make the system both very functional and easy to use.
"Second, support was a critical factor for us, and we were impressed with the 24-hour/7-days-a-week support via telephone, e-mail, or fax available from Innovative's headquarters in California. We've also met with some of the European support staff and feel very comfortable with the training and support plans.
"Finally, the functional aspects of Millennium were an excellent match for our needs. Our library has holdings in English and Arabic, and the way that Millennium handles Arabic script was just right for us. We were very impressed with the simplicity and functionality of the circulation module, and we also found that the acquisitions module--more of an after-thought in some of the systems we evaluated--appeared useful and well-developed. The ability to create our 'most needed' management reports without SQL programming was also extremely important to us."
Petros Demetriou, Business Manager at Innovative Interfaces, said, "We are delighted that the American University of Sharjah has become our first customer in the Middle East. As the only truly Web-based system available, Millennium will ensure the library will be best placed to exploit future technological and functional developments in the educational sector."
Demetriou added, ""Innovative is dedicated to meeting the particular needs of Middle Eastern libraries, including the continuing internationalization of its products. Millennium has attracted a great deal of interest from libraries in the region, and we look forward to partnering with many of them in the near future."