3 York Court
Upper York Street
Bristol BS2 8QF
Telephone: + 44 (0) 117 910 8100
US Office (Headquarters)
Telephone: +1 510-655-6200
Innovative Interfaces, a privately held company wholly owned by cofounder, CEO, and president Jerry Kline, ranks as the third largest in the global industry and has retained its market standing without (at least since 1997) mergers and acquisitions. It strengthened it position in the European market when it took over the UK company SLS in 1997 –its only acquisition in its over 25-year history: SLS had an office in Spain which it has retained to serve the French market as well.
Innovative prides itself on its conservative and very profitable financial standing (“profitable for 100 quarters”). It has a strategy of organic growth by both winning new name accounts and importantly leveraging its customer base for upselling which it has developed into a fine art. It does not appear to have any appetite for mergers or acquisitions, at least while the current President is in place
Global revenues: Between $70-$80 million in 2006. About 70% of the company's 2006 business was from U.S. libraries.
Global personnel: 295
Innovative continues to develop its core LMS and has been first or early to market with new add on products, notably ERM (where it lead the way) and most recently vertical search (Encore). It prefers to develop products itself rather than use third parties.
Innovative has consistently eschewed operating through distributors and prefers to develop its own full range of products. For example despite initially working with MuseGlobal on federated search it has since developed its own products.
In the US it prefers to sell it own self-check solution but in Europe has interfaced with various self-serve RFID companies including 3M. In Europe (France in particular) market characteristics meant it had to adopt a more flexible approach to partners.
Innovative remains one of the largest and most profitable LMS vendors. Perhaps it weak point is its ownership by its founder who provides much of its direction and identity.
Financially conservatively managed and, a hard focus on richly functional products and genuine commitment to customers. It retains an impressive track record of customer retention over 25 years and this provides it with a great market to upsell to.
Although corporately conservative it has been first to market or an early developer of many library products.