Elsevier’s scientific and medical information and tools help its customers improve outcomes in science and health
Elsevier is the world’s leading provider of scientific and medical information and serves scientists, health professionals and students worldwide. Its objective is to help its customers advance science and improve healthcare by providing world class information and innovative solutions that enable customers to make critical decisions, enhance productivity and improve outcomes.
Total revenues for the year ended 31 December 2011 were £2,058m. Elsevier is a global business with principal operations in Amsterdam, Beijing, Boston, Chennai, Delhi, London, Madrid, Milan, Munich, New York, Oxford, Paris, Philadelphia, Rio de Janeiro, St. Louis, San Diego, Singapore and Tokyo. Elsevier has 6,900 employees.
Elsevier is organised around two market-facing businesses: Science & Technology, which serves the scientific and technology communities, and Health Sciences, which serves the health community. Both of these businesses are supported by a global shared services organisation which provides integrated editorial systems and production services, product platforms, distribution, and other support functions.
Science & Technology is the world’s leading scientific information provider. It delivers a wide array of information and workflow tools that help researchers generate valuable insights in the advancement of scientific discovery and improve the productivity of research. Its customers are scientists, academic institutions, research leaders and administrators, corporations and governments which rely on Elsevier to: provide high quality content; review, publish, disseminate and preserve research findings; and create innovative tools to help focus research strategies and improve their effectiveness.
Elsevier publishes over 240,000 new science & technology research articles each year through some 1,250 journals, many of which are the foremost publications in their field and a primary point of reference for new research. The vast majority of customers receive these journals through ScienceDirect, the world’s largest database of scientific and medical research, providing access to over 10 million scientific and medical journal articles, used by over 7 million researchers each year.
Elsevier also publishes over 700 new English language science & technology book titles annually, supporting bibliographic data, indexes and abstracts, and review and reference works. 15,000 online books are available on ScienceDirect, with over 1,000 online books added each year.
Other major products include Scopus and Reaxys. Scopus is the largest abstract and citation database of research literature in the world, with abstracts and bibliographic information on more than 45 million scientific research articles from 19,000 peer reviewed journals and 5,000 international publishers. Scopus also has data on more than 24 million patents. Reaxys is a leading solution for synthetic chemists that integrates chemical reaction and compound data searching with synthesis planning.
In December 2011, Elsevier acquired Ariadne Genomics a provider of pathway analysis tools and semantic technologies for life science researchers which will complement Elsevier’s efforts to serve the needs of researchers in the pharma biotech sector.
A major challenge facing researchers and institutions is the ever growing amount of research and related information with limited time to identify and analyse what is most relevant. To address this challenge, Elsevier has been developing a suite of new products that significantly improve the speed at which researchers are able to find the most relevant information and analyse this information using the most innovative applications. SciVerse Hub provides a single search interface for accessing ScienceDirect, Scopus and scientific web content. In addition, SciVerse Application Marketplace & Developer Network enables researchers and third party developers to build customised applications on top of Elsevier’s information and other data and analytics enhancing the utility of the underlying content.
Following a successful collaboration since 2007, Elsevier acquired QUOSA in January 2012. QUOSA’s technological capabilities will raise the efficiency of the search and discovery process and will also allow researchers to manage information more efficiently.
Elsevier is continuing to develop the SciVal suite of products that help academic and government institutions evaluate their research performance, determine research strategies and increase institutional efficiencies. Leveraging bibliometric data, such as citations from Scopus, SciVal Spotlight helps institutions and governments to identify their distinctive research strengths, evaluate performance and increase the focus of their R&D investments. SciVal Funding assists researchers and institutions in identifying grants that are most relevant in their research areas. SciVal Experts enables researchers to establish a directory of experts in their area of interest, while SciVal Strata facilitates performance benchmarking by research teams.
Health Sciences is a world leading medical information provider. Through its medical journals, books, major reference works, databases and online information tools, Elsevier provides critical information and analysis on which its customers rely to base their decisions, to improve medical outcomes and enhance the efficiency of healthcare. Health Sciences serves medical researchers, doctors, nurses, allied health professionals and students, as well as hospitals, research institutions, health insurers, managed healthcare organisations and pharmaceutical companies.
Elsevier publishes over 700 health sciences journals, including on behalf of learned societies, and, in 2011, 1,500 new health sciences book titles and clinical reference works were published both in print and through ScienceDirect and other electronic platforms such as MD Consult. MD Consult is a leading online clinical information service with more than 2,400 institutional customers. Flagship titles include market leading medical journals such as The Lancet, and major medical reference works such as Gray’s Anatomy, Nelson’s Pediatrics and Netter’s Atlas of Human Anatomy. In addition to its local language publishing in many countries across the world, Health Sciences leverages its content and solutions into new markets through local language versioning. In November 2011, ClinicalKey was launched in beta allowing physicians to access the leading reference and evidence-based medicine in a single, fully-integrated site built to accommodate their clinical information workflows.
Elsevier is a leader in medical education and training resources, particularly to the nursing and allied health professions. From print and electronic books to virtual clinical patient care, Health Sciences supports students, teaching faculties and healthcare organisations in education and practice. A strong focus is on the further development of innovative electronic services: the Evolve portal provides a rich resource to support faculty and students and now has 3 million registered users; Evolve Reach (Health Education Systems Inc.) provides online review and testing tools for nursing and the allied health professions; Evolve Teach provides online resources and solutions to support faculty.
A growing area of focus is clinical decision support, providing online information and analytics to deliver patient-specific solutions at the point of care to improve patient outcomes. Gold Standard provides critical information on drug interactions to assist effective treatment; CPM Resource Center provides a data driven framework to support nurses in undertaking procedures; Nursing Consult provides nursing care guidelines in trauma and disease management; MEDai uses patient data and analytics to help identify areas for improvement in clinical practice within hospitals and lower costs for the payers of healthcare through preventative interventions. In February 2011, Elsevier entered the emerging clinical decision support market in China through the acquisition of Datong, a leading online provider of drug information that helps Chinese hospitals to improve quality of care through better drug usage.
Elsevier also provides services to the pharmaceutical industry through advertising and sponsored communications to the specialist community it serves. In 2011, Elsevier continued the restructuring of this business focusing more on the services which leverage Health Sciences’ core information and distribution platform.
The science and medical information markets have good long term demand growth characteristics. The importance of research and development to economic performance and competitive positioning is well understood by governments, academic institutions and corporations. This is reflected in the long term growth in R&D spend and in the number of researchers worldwide, leading to greater research output and publishing.
Additionally, there is growing demand for tools that allow research to better target and improve the spend and efficiency of the research process.
In health, market growth is also supported by demographic trends, with ageing populations that require more healthcare, rising prosperity in developing economies with increasing expectations of better healthcare provision, and the increasing focus on improving medical outcomes and efficiency.
Given that a significant proportion of scientific research and healthcare is funded directly or indirectly by governments, spending is influenced by governmental budgetary considerations. The commitment to research and health provision does, however, remain high, even in more difficult budgetary environments.
Elsevier’s strategic goal is to make valued contributions to the communities it serves in advancing science, improving medical outcomes and enhancing productivity. To achieve this, Elsevier is focused on: building world-class content; deepening its customer engagement to identify how better to help them achieve their desired outcomes more efficiently and effectively; delivering tools which link, analyse and illuminate content and data to help customers make critical decisions and improve their productivity; increasing its investment in high-growth markets and disciplines; and continuously improving organisational efficiency.
In Science & Technology, priorities are to continually enhance the quality and relevance of research and reference content and expand data sets, while adding greater functionality and utility to SciVerse, ScienceDirect, Scopus and new tools to assist researcher productivity. The SciVal suite of performance and planning tools will continue to be expanded to help academic and government institutions target their research spend and improve research efficiency and economic outcomes.
In Health Sciences, priorities are to continue to enhance the quality and relevance of its content and actively manage the ongoing format shift from print to electronic information consumption by developing improved electronic solutions that add more value to its users and customers.
Additionally, Health Sciences continues to build out clinical decision support services to meet customer demand for tools that deliver better medical outcomes and lowers costs for payers, physicians and hospitals. Elsevier is also focused on increasing growth in emerging markets through expansion of local publishing and versioning of content and electronic services.
Business model, distribution channels and competition
Science and medical research is principally disseminated on a paid subscription basis to the research facilities of academic institutions, government and corporations, and, in the case of medical and healthcare journals, also to individual practitioners and medical society members. Advertising and promotional revenues are derived from pharmaceutical and other companies.
Electronic products, such as ScienceDirect, Scopus and MD Consult, are generally sold direct to customers through a dedicated sales force that has offices around the world. Subscription agents facilitate the sales and administrative process for print journals. Books are sold through traditional and online book stores, wholesalers and, particularly in medical and healthcare markets, directly to end users.
Competition within science and medical publishing is generally on a title by title and product by product basis. Competing journals, books and databases are typically published by learned societies and other professional publishers. Workflow tools face similar competition as well as from software companies and internal solutions developed by customers.
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