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OverDrive

This dashboard brings together data, trends, news, and other resources from Library Technology Guides describing the organization, its executive leadership, personnel employed, business history, as well as related features and news articles.

Connect to the OverDrive website

One OverDrive Way
Cleveland, Ohio 44125
United States
Phone: 216-573-6886
Web site: https://company.overdrive.com/
Email:

Executive Leadership

photo of Richard Sarnoff
Richard Sarnoff
Board Chairman and Partner KKR
photo of Steve  Potash
Steve Potash
President and Chief Executive Officer
photo of Lori Franklin
Lori Franklin
Chief Operating Officer
photo of Greg Farmer
Greg Farmer
Chief Financial Officer
photo of Jeff Sterling
Jeff Sterling
Chief Technology Officer
photo of Erica Lazzaro
Erica Lazzaro
Executive Vice President, Publisher Services and General Counsel
photo of Ryan Fish
Ryan Fish
Executive Vice President, Product Management

Company Ownership

Overdrive has been owned by KKR since June 2020

Mergers and Acquisitions

Mergers and Acquisitions for OverDrive

Documents or articles featuring OverDrive

Breeding, Marshall. Overdrive Sale Has Closed. July 2020. Smart Libraries Newsletter. The February 2020 issue of Smart Library Newsletter featured the proposed transfer of ownership of OverDrive from Rakuten to investment firm KKR. This transaction, initiated in December 2019, closed in early June 2020.

Breeding, Marshall. OverDrive to Change Ownership. February 2020. Smart Libraries Newsletter. OverDrive, the largest commercial provider of e-books and other digital content to libraries, issued a Christmas Eve announcement of its pending change in ownership. The company's current owner Rakuten has entered into a definitive agreement to sell OverDrive to KKR, a major US-based investment firm. As digital lending continues its steady rise, this news sparks interest and raises questions for the library community.

Breeding, Marshall. Developments in E-book Lending Technologies. June 2013. Smart Libraries Newsletter. The support of e-book lending stands as one of the crucial technology issues for public libraries. The initial phase of library e-book lending was mostly based on acquiring titles from one or more e-book providers and then delivering users to platforms provided by those vendors for selection, check-out, and downloading titles to e-reading devices. Libraries naturally want to provide a similar service for e-books as they offer for their print collections. General expectations would include the ability to develop a collection shaped according to the interests and research needs of its community and for library patrons to borrow e-books without cost, for reasonable loan periods, and with protected privacy. Yet, fulfilling ideal expectations for library e-book lending services continues to face a number of obstacles. From a technology perspective, challenges lie in simplifying the way that patrons can select, check-out, and download items. On the business and legal front, only portions of the collective e-book universe are available to libraries to purchase for their lending programs, and in many cases higher costs per title apply and possibly limitations on lending terms. The developments seen in recent months reflect ongoing progress in each of these areas.

Breeding, Marshall. OverDrive Prepares to Release API for E-Book Lending Integration. May 2012. Smart Libraries Newsletter. Until now, OverDrive has delivered its service through its own hosted platform, taking advantage of the limited capabilities of established protocols such as SIP2, Remote Patron Authentication, to integrate its services into third-party applications. In response to the increasing demand for interoperability and integration, OverDrive has announced its plans to deliver a set of application programming interfaces (APIs) to allow the developers of other related products, typically integrated library systems, online catalogs, mobile app developers, or discovery interfaces, to incorporate OverDrive's e-book discovery, lending, and management functionality. These APIs will be available to libraries that partner with OverDrive and to approved third-party vendors.

Breeding, Marshall. OverDrive acquires Booki.sh. May 2012. Smart Libraries Newsletter. OverDrive announced in March 2012 that it had acquired the Australia-based company Booki.sh, a portfolio project of Inventive Labs, a small consulting and software development firm founded by Joseph Pearson and Virginia Murdoch. Following the acquisition of Booki.sh, the remaining consulting business will combine with Icelab, another Web consulting firm.

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News Announcements

November 5, 2021. OverDrive Receives President’s E Award for Exports. At a ceremony in Washington, D.C. today, the U.S. Department of Commerce presented the 2021 President's “E” Award for Exports to OverDrive, the leading digital reading platform for libraries and schools worldwide. OverDrive was chosen for their significant sustained global growth and demonstrated excellence in exporting for at least four years to a wide range of international markets. This award was created in 1961 by Executive Order of President John F. Kennedy and is the highest recognition any U.S. entity can receive for making a significant contribution to the expansion of U.S. exports.


November 2, 2021. OverDrive Academic expands service and team dedicated to colleges and universities worldwide. OverDrive, the leading digital reading platform for libraries and schools, announced the expansion of OverDrive Academic, a division that supplies ebooks and audiobooks to two- and four-year colleges and universities worldwide. Students and staff now benefit from increased access to more digital content and a dedicated team providing customized digital collections, tools to maximize efficiency and 24/7 support. OverDrive Academic serves hundreds of academic institutions with the industry's leading catalog and Libby, the award-winning reading app.


November 1, 2021. Public libraries join largest global digital book club with New York Times bestseller. Readers around the world are diving into a New York Times bestseller during Big Library Read, the world's largest digital book club. From November 1-15, thousands of booklovers around the world will borrow and read Natalie D. Richards's young adult suspense thriller, Five Total Strangers, from their public library or participating high school.


October 27, 2021. Kanopy appoints Jason Tyrrell as General Manager. Kanopy, the company dedicated to providing access to high-quality films that inspire, entertain, and educate, today announced that Kanopy's Vice President of Content, Jason Tyrrell, will take the helm as the company's General Manager. Tyrrell's promotion commences as Kanopy prepares for rapid growth in light of its acquisition by OverDrive in July 2021. Former Kanopy CEO Kevin Sayar will remain with the company as an advisor through the end of the year.


October 13, 2021. Digital Magazines now available to K-12 schools worldwide in Sora reading app. In response to educators' need for more digital content to support classroom learning, OverDrive Education now offers popular digital magazines to schools around the world via the Sora student reading app. Schools can purchase an affordable bundle of 50 always-available educational and recreational magazines for all students who use Sora. Sora is the student reading app available in more than 50,000 schools worldwide.


October 7, 2021. OverDrive Education Strengthens Curriculum Focus with Acquisition of TeachingBooks.net. OverDrive, the leading digital reading platform for libraries and schools, announced today that it has acquired TeachingBooks.net. TeachingBooks creates and maintains the leading source of supplemental materials that perpetuates informed, joyful reading across the curriculum while furthering successful literacy outcomes. The acquisition of TeachingBooks significantly enhances OverDrive Education's Sora reading app and platform to serve K-12 schools around the world. TeachingBooks provides K-12 schools with more than 265,000 curated materials from trusted educational sources, as well as their own proprietary content, to enrich how a book is taught in the classroom.


September 1, 2021. OverDrive donates kids and teens titles to public libraries worldwide. To help libraries meet increased demand for digital content, OverDrive donated 260 juvenile and young adult titles to more than 21,000 public libraries around the world. This bundle, part of OverDrive's new Everyone Reads program, includes high-interest ebook, audiobook and Read-Along titles that are always available to patrons through September 1, 2024. OverDrive is the leading digital reading platform for libraries and schools worldwide.


August 25, 2021. Update for US libraries regarding the ARPA prorated content model: More publishers agree to join. Overdrive nows offer American Rescue Plan Act support for Hachette US, Macmillan Publishers, and Pottermore in addition to Penguin Random House.


August 24, 2021. TN Marketing expands Craftsy offering to Libraries. TN Marketing, a global online video subscription and streaming media business focused on creating communities by engaging people with their passions, announced an extension of the Craftsy brand into the library space. Craftsy@LIBRARIES is partnering with library digital content providers to make the Craftsy platform available to participating libraries' patrons across the country.


July 20, 2021. Sourcebooks CEO Dominique Raccah to present keynote at OverDrive Digipalooza ‘21. OverDrive, the leading digital book and media supplier to libraries and schools, announced that Sourcebooks Founder, Publisher and CEO Dominique Raccah will present the day 2 keynote at Digipalooza '21, August 3-5, 2021. A three half-day virtual event this year, Digipalooza is the leading conference for public, school, academic and corporate librarians sharing best practices for serving communities of readers with digital books and media.


View All OverDrive News Announcements

Corporate Chronology

Jun 09, 2021 OverDrive to acquire video streaming service Kanopy
OverDrive, the leading digital reading platform for libraries and schools worldwide, announced today that it is acquiring Kanopy, a leading video streaming service for public and academic libraries.

Jun 23, 2020 OverDrive to acquire RBdigital library buisiness from RBmedia
OverDrive, the leading digital reading platform for libraries and schools, announced today that it is acquiring the assets of RBmedia's library business, including the RBdigital platform in North America, the United Kingdom and Australia.

May 09, 2020 KKR acquires of OverDrive
OverDrive, the leading digital reading platform for libraries and schools, today announced the completion of its acquisition by KKR, a leading global investment firm. In December 2019, KKR announced that it had agreed to acquire OverDrive from Rakuten.

Mar 2015 OverDrive acquired by Rakuten
OverDrive, the leading eBook, audiobook and streaming video platform for libraries and schools, announced it entered into an agreement to be acquired by Rakuten Inc., one of the world’s largest Internet services companies. Insight Venture Partners has been the majority shareholder of OverDrive since 2010. OverDrive will operate as a subsidiary of Rakuten USA and will work closely with other Rakuten companies. Rakuten companies provide a variety of consumer and business-focused services including eReading (Kobo), e-commerce (Rakuten.com, formerly buy.com, and Ebates), instant messaging (Viber), and others in the US, Canada and around the world.

Mar 05, 2013 OverDrive acquires Australian eBook company Booki.sh
OverDrive announced it has acquired Australian eBook company Booki.sh. Booki.sh is the developer of a cloud-based platform for distributing, selling and reading popular eBooks from anywhere and on any device with a modern web browser. Booki.sh founders and principals Joseph Pearson, Virginia Murdoch and Peter Haasz will join OverDrive from their existing offices in Melbourne to expand the global distributor’s publishing, library and school initiatives.

Oct 18, 2010 Insight Venture Partners acquires majority ownership of OverDrive
OverDrive announced that Insight Venture Partners, a leading private equity firm focused on technology companies, has made a major investment in the company.

Nov 25, 2008 Kanopy founded by Olivia Humphrey

May 2003 OverDrive launches its service for library e-book lending
OverDrive launches its service for library e-book lending. Cleveland Public Library and King County Library System are early implementors.

2001 OverDrive launches Content Reserve digital marketplace

1986 OverDrive is founded by Steve Potash