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Ingram Content Group Announces Agreement for Francisco Partners to Acquire VitalSource Technologies

Press Releases — Apr 14, 2021



Deal Facts

North America

Divisional Carve-Outs

LA VERGNE, TN – Ingram Content Group® (“Ingram”) today announced it has signed a definitive agreement to sell VitalSource Technologies LLC to Francisco Partners, a leading global investment firm that specializes in partnering with technology businesses.

VitalSource® is a leading education technology solutions provider committed to helping partners create, deliver, and distribute affordable and impactful learning experiences worldwide. VitalSource’s products and technologies, including the leading learning platform, Bookshelf, are used by 16 million learners in more than 240 countries.

Under Ingram’s leadership, VitalSource was transformed from a small venture serving a niche market to a global leader in digital content distribution. Ingram first acquired VitalSource in 2006 with an eye to grow it into a larger digital learning platform that could serve the higher ed market and more. This was part of a larger effort by Ingram to help the book industry leverage technology to transform the way content is accessed and in turn, the way the book industry works.

"We are very proud of the extraordinary value-add VitalSource offers the academic and professional communities. VitalSource has grown into one of the leading digital curriculum delivery and learning platform providers with proven scalability and reliability at a time where digital content and online learning is very much in demand,” said Ingram Content Group President & CEO Shawn Morin. “Francisco Partners is committed to furthering the VitalSource mission of improving learner outcomes and accelerating our commitment to developing innovative, forward-thinking solutions and platforms that open doors to affordable and impactful learning experiences to students and professionals around the world.”

“We are excited to partner with the VitalSource team to improve the affordability and learning experience for all students,” said Jason Brein, Partner at Francisco Partners. “We are grateful to Ingram Content Group for the opportunity to invest in VitalSource during its next phase of growth and look forward to leveraging our education technology investment expertise to further transform the business,” added Paul Ilse, Senior Operating Partner at Francisco Partners Consulting.

“We’re thrilled to have entered this agreement with Francisco Partners and be in the position to drive continued digital transformation across all of our segments,” said VitalSource President Kent Freeman. “This acquisition is a great fit for our business, for our team, and for our customers and partners. It ensures that we will be able to expand our efforts to deliver affordable and impactful learning solutions for students and professionals. We are proud of the work we have done to become a leader in the educational technology industry, and we are poised to accelerate those efforts with this investment from Francisco Partners. I couldn’t be more excited to lead the team into this next part of VitalSource’s journey.”

The transaction is expected to close this summer, pending regulatory approval.

About VitalSource

VitalSource is the leading education technology solutions provider committed to helping partners create, deliver, and distribute affordable, accessible, and impactful learning experiences worldwide. As a recognized innovator in the digital course materials market, VitalSource is best known for partnering with more than 1,000 publishers and resellers to deliver extraordinary learning experiences to millions of active users globally– and today we’re also powering new, cutting-edge technologies designed to optimize teaching and learning for maximum results. Learn more at and follow us on Twitter, LinkedIn, and Instagram.

About Francisco Partners

Francisco Partners is a leading global investment firm that specializes in partnering with technology and technology-enabled businesses. Since its launch over 20 years ago, Francisco Partners has invested in more than 300 technology companies, making it one of the most active and longstanding investors in the technology industry. With more than $25 billion in assets under management, the firm invests in opportunities where its deep sectoral knowledge and operational expertise can help companies realize their full potential. For more information on Francisco Partners, please visit

About Ingram Content Group

The world is reading, and Ingram Content Group (“Ingram”) connects people with content in all forms. Providing comprehensive services for publishers, retailers, libraries and educators, Ingram makes these services seamless and accessible through technology, innovation and creativity. With an expansive global network of offices and facilities, Ingram’s services include digital and physical book distribution, print-on-demand, and digital learning. Ingram Content Group is a part of Ingram Industries Inc. and includes Ingram Book Group LLC, Ingram Publisher Services LLC, Lightning Source LLC, VitalSource Technologies LLC, Ingram Library Services LLC, and Tennessee Book Company LLC. For more information, visit