Open Access News

News from the open access movement

Thursday, April 02, 2009

More on Springer's plans

Katherine Allen, Springer Is Not for Sale, Says CEO, Information Today NewsBreaks, April 2, 2009.  Excerpt:

Springer Science + Business Media is not for sale, said CEO Derk Haank, speaking at the U.K. Serials Group (UKSG) conference this week in Torquay, U.K. The sale was recently reported in The Guardian and elsewhere. But it was categorically denied by Haank, who did, however, reveal that Springer's private-equity owners Candover and Cinven were in discussion with a third partner in order to provide additional investment.... 

In a less-turbulent climate, Springer would likely be an attractive acquisition target....

However, as the recent failure of the attempted sale of Reed Business Information shows, there is little appetite for big media deals at the moment.

After Springer's acquisition last year of open access publisher BioMed Central, Haank made it clear that, in his view, open access won't go away - but it won't take over either. In his opinion, the volume of articles published as open access is unlikely to increase to more than 10% of the total (compared to 3% at present)....


  • I don't know where Haank's 3% estimate comes from.  But note that it's intended capture gold OA ("articles published as open access"), not green or green + gold OA.  Today, about 16% of peer-reviewed journals are OA.  For this purpose I'm assuming that there are about 4,000 peer-reviewed OA journals (the current tally at the DOAJ) and about 25,000 peer-reviewed journals (a widely-used but perhaps inaccurate rule of thumb).  There's some evidence that the average OA journal publishes fewer articles/year than the average TA journal, but I'd be very surprised if the difference was large enough to make the OA journal total just 3% of the OA+TA journal total.
  • Also see my post on the original rumors that Springer was for sale, and my post on Hank's correction.