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October 30, 2013

Opinion

An ELT publisher’s survival plan

In her opinion piece over on eltjam, Laurie Harrison looks at the steps an ELT publisher needs to take now in order to prepare for the inevitable onslaught of edtech startups.

It’s crunch time for ELT publishers. There are a few more years left for the traditional ELT publishing business to stagger on, possibly even quite profitably for some. But we all know it’s on the way out, as evidenced by the attempts – with varying degrees of conviction – of the existing players to turn their businesses into ones capable of surviving and thriving in a world populated by rapidly changing student expectations and super-ambitious and rapacious EdTech start-ups who will very happily destroy the cosy world of ELT.

We’ve seen bold moves from Pearson, and turbulence elsewhere. And we haven’t yet seen the market taken over by the EdTech guys, so there might still be time. It’s a common trope that ELT is a conservative and slow-moving business, which may be true – but change now is required in order to be relevant in a few years time. The conservative end of the market has your backlist to keep them happy for a while yet. So there’s no need to kill off existing businesses – but failing to build the new one is surely suicide. So, what to do?

Read the full post on eltjam.

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