Blacksburg, Va. – VTLS Inc. signed eight contracts for the Virtua ILS – Integrated Library Systems in the past month. The company says that additional contracts are being negotiated. Of the eight contracts signed, five libraries are located in the United States and Canada, and three are outside North America.
The Roanoke Higher Education Center chose one of the smaller versions of Virtua ILS, consisting of a five-user license. The Center also opted to take advantage of the system hosting service offered by VTLS. This service provides Virtua ILS software components, required server hardware, comprehensive system management, software support and hardware maintenance.
“Considering the unique access challenges that face the Roanoke Higher Education Center Library, providing library services to faculty and students who are not physically on the originating campus of their courses, Virtua is the best and only solution for us. We are excited about the endless possibilities the Chameleon iPortal will offer our patrons,” said Carla James-Collins, director of the Roanoke Higher Education Center Library.
Dr. Vinod Chachra, president of VTLS Inc. remarked, “Last year VTLS demonstrated that Virtua could handle a library system with more than 140 million bibliographic records. This year, with the Roanoke Higher Education Center, we are pleased to be able to offer the same power and sophistication to small libraries at extremely cost effective prices.”
The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC), which previously used the VTLS classic system, has also signed an agreement to upgrade their system to Virtua and take advantage of the system hosting services offered by VTLS. Their new system is slated to go live this spring.
VTLS Inc. signed three new licenses for Virtua in Nunavut, Canada's newest northern territory. Nunavut Public Library Services (NPLS), which serve the largest and most geographically dispersed jurisdiction in North America, purchased a Virtua license. The library previously used the MultiLIS system. Three other Canadian sites, previously sharing a single Virtua license, have purchased two new independent licenses in order to allow each library to have its own Virtua system. These libraries are Nunavut Arctic College, Nunavut Department of Justice, and the Legislative Assembly of Nunavut. These three sites along with the NPLS are among the first libraries to provide support in the native Inuktitut language. Virtua’s Unicode™ implementation with full support of the Inuktitut syllabic character set enables residents and other native speakers to access information in their own language. Virtua ILS is the only library automation system currently featuring full Inuktitut character support.
“We are hoping with the new system to provide Web access to a locally controlled catalog to serve both the community libraries and our off-site patrons,” says a staff member of NPLS. “From a public standpoint, we’re looking forward not only to the Chameleon iPortal being available to the general public and the community libraries, but also to the possibility of getting our largest public library in Iqaluit into online circulation, which has been impossible with our old system due to telecommunication difficulties.”
Three international libraries also selected Virtua in January. The African Development Bank, located in the Ivory Coast, selected the Virtua ILS with an installation by June 2002. Established in 1964, the African Development Bank is dedicated to combating poverty and mobilizing resources towards the economic and social progress of its regional member countries. Also, the Library at Universiti Putra Malaysia (UPM) has completed their upgrade to Virtua. UPM has a book collection of about 400,000 volumes, about 6,300 serial titles, as well as a collection of maps, sound recordings, microforms, videotapes, slides, computer files and other research material. UPM uses Virtua's cataloging, acquisitions, circulation, serials control, reserve room control and online public access catalogue. Established in 1931, UPM recently celebrated its 70th anniversary. In 1980, The University of New England (UNE) in Armidale, Australia, became VTLS' first international customer. Now, UNE has gone live with Virtua ILS with a 64-user license to serve over 23,000 patrons and catalog over 397,000 bibliographic records.
“VTLS and UNE have worked together for more than 20 years. It is heart warming to have long standing customers like UNE, after an open and competitive process, reselect VTLS as their supplier of automation systems” said Jack Bazuzi, Vice President of International Operations.