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netLibrary Adopts Open eBook Specification Standards

Press release from the issuing company

BOULDER, COLO - April 26, 2001 - netLibrary, the leading provider of eBooks and Internet-based content/collection management services, today announced the adoption of industry standards for netLibrary eBooks. netLibrary has been a member of the Open eBook Forum, and has actively supported the development of industry standards for the past two years. As a leader in the development of the institutional library eBook market, this strategic move positions netLibrary to significantly accelerate the adoption and use of eBooks by its library customers while continuing to support a quality eBook experience and maintain core functionality. Adoption of OeBF standards will result in lower cost and faster conversion processes which will facilitate the availability of more front-list titles from the world's leading publishers, many of whom are already working with netLibrary. Going forward, netLibrary will accept electronic files meeting OeBF standards directly from publishers or, at the publisher's request, manage the conversion process on behalf of the publisher. Doing so will result in the re-allocation of conversion work to outsource vendors, changing the scope of conversion processes handled in-house. "This move will enhance our ability to provide our library customers with the quality, current content they desire, while responding to publisher requests encouraging us to align with OeBF standards," said Rob Kaufman, President and CEO of netLibrary. "After careful study, we determined this change will benefit our more than 5,000 institutional library customers as well as our 300 internationally known publishers. In addition, it will create efficiencies that will strengthen our business model and allow us to focus more of our resources directly on supporting the publishers and libraries we work with daily," Kaufman continued. Conversion processing for the company's MetaText Division will remain unchanged. Several steps in the MetaText conversion process are already being outsourced. Other activities, such as the creation of sample pages and MTML, are too new to outsource at this time and will continue to be performed at netLibrary. This shift in netLibrary eBook conversion processes to outsourcing vendors will result in a restructuring that reduces the company's headcount by approximately 90 positions. The remaining employee base will be focused more directly on customer and publisher support programs.