Cengage is an educational content, technology, and services company for the higher education, K-12, professional, and library markets worldwide. It has operations in more than 20 countries around the world.[2][3][4]

Company information

The company is headquartered in Boston, Massachusetts, and has approximately 5,000 employees worldwide across 20 countries.[citation needed] It was headquartered at its Stamford, Connecticut office until April 2014.

Gale is Cengage's library reference arm and specializes in e-research and educational publishing for libraries, schools and businesses. The company creates and maintains databases that are published online, in print, as e-books and in microform.[5]


Cengage offers print and digital textbooks, instructor supplements, online reference databases, distance learning courses, test preparation materials, corporate training courses, career assessment tools, materials for specific academic disciplines, and custom solutions.

On December 5, 2017, Cengage announced Cengage Unlimited, a subscription service that allows students to pay for access to the company's entire digital higher education catalog by the semester or year, rather than buying individual textbooks.[6] It is planned to be available by summer 2018, but is being marketed to students, faculty and institutions immediately.[7][8]


Cengage Learning, formerly Thomson Learning, which owned the Wadsworth Publishing imprint, was created out of a restructuring of International Thomson Publishing. It was announced on October 25, 2006 that Thomson Learning would be offered for sale by the Thomson Corporation, with an estimated value of up to US$5 billion.[9][10] The company was bought by a private equity consortium consisting of Apax Partners and OMERS Capital Partners for US$7.75 billion, and the name was changed to Cengage Learning on 24 July 2007.[11] In 2011, Cengage Learning acquired the National Geographic Society's school publishing unit, and combined this school business with the Global ELT business to create and launch the National Geographic Learning brand. The global brand combined the former Cengage Learning ELT and National Geographic School Publishing imprints and sub-brands under one unified identity.[12]

In September 2013 David Shaffer retired as chairman of the company.[13] He had previously been executive vice president of The Thomson Corporation from 2005 to 2006, and then President and CEO of both Thomson Publishing International and Thomson Learning.[14]

The company had acquired a large amount of debt through the course of its initial buyout and subsequent acquisitions, and had seen declining revenue through a shrinking market for paper textbooks. Cengage Learning filed for bankruptcy under Chapter 11 on July 2, 2013.[11][15] Cengage Learning emerged from bankruptcy on April 1, 2014, eliminating approximately $4 billion of its funded debt and securing $1.75 billion in exit financing. Post-bankruptcy, the company decided to focus on developing digital study guides and other educational supplements, as well as hard-copy textbooks.

In January 2015 they announced expansion of their LearnLaunch Accelerator program, which provides seed funding and intensive coaching to promising startups, to the University of Chihuahua in Mexico.[16][17]

In November 2016, Cengage Learning rebranded as simply Cengage and rolled out a new branding scheme that highlights its student-centered approach.


In addition to organic growth, Cengage has expanded through acquisitions within the publishing industry. Notable acquisitions include:

Date of acquisition announced Asset acquired Industry
1 March 2004 Education to Go[18] Online continuing education courses
16 May 2008 PAL Publications[19] Professional reference series
2 June 2008 Houghton Mifflin College Division[19] Publishing for 2- and 4-year colleges
17 July 2008 Gatlin Education Services[20] Web-based training for education providers
16 December 2008 HighBeam Research[21] Paid search engine of newspapers and magazines
1 August 2011 National Geographic School Publishing[12] Publishing for K-12 schools
September 2015 Learning Objects, Inc Learning management systems and adaptive education tools
October 2015 Pathbrite, Inc ePortfolio services for learning, reflection, and career advancement
September 2016 WebAssign[22] Online instructional application for faculty and students


The company's product lines include 4LTR Press, Aplia, Cengage Learning PTR, Chilton, Education To Go, Gale, Milady, MindTap, and National Geographic Learning.

Since 2015, South-Western products have been branded as Cengage Learning.[23]

Cengage Unlimited, a SaaS solution, will be available in 2018.[citation needed]


In 2016, based on its 2015 revenues, Publishers Weekly ranked the company 14 out of 57 publishers worldwide, a decline of three slots from the previous year. The list includes both trade and educational publishers.[24]

See also


  1. ^ Callum Borchers (1 April 2014). "Cengage emerges from bankruptcy with Boston as its electronic publishing base". BostonGlobe.com. Archived from the original on 15 September 2014. Retrieved 2014-09-15. 
  2. ^ (Jun 27, 2014) Global Publishing Leaders 2014: Cengage Archived 2015-06-12 at the Wayback Machine. publishersweekly.com
  3. ^ Company Info - Wall Street Journal. Cengage Learning Archived 2015-06-18 at the Wayback Machine.
  4. ^ Company Overview of Cengage Learning, Inc. Archived 2017-08-09 at the Wayback Machine. BloombergBusiness
  5. ^ Gale : A Cengage Learning Company Archived October 17, 2013, at the Wayback Machine. CAUL (Council of Australian University Librarians)
  6. ^ Boston publisher launches a Netflix for textbooks
  7. ^ link to site
  8. ^ insideHigherEd article
  9. ^ Thomas, Helen (25 October 2006) Thomson to put learning unit on the block. Archived 2017-11-28 at the Wayback Machine. FT Alphaville. Financial Times.
  10. ^ (October 25, 2006) Thomson to sell education units Archived 2015-06-05 at the Wayback Machine. Boston.com
  11. ^ a b "Cengage Learning Files for Bankruptcy". New York Times. July 2, 2013. Archived from the original on November 8, 2014. Retrieved 2014-11-07. 
  12. ^ a b Jinks, Beth (June 24, 2011) Apax's Cengage Buying National Geographic's School Publisher Archived 2016-07-31 at the Wayback Machine. Bloomberg.com
  13. ^ Edgecliffe-Johnson, Andrew (July 6, 2013) Debt-laden Cengage in hunt for new chief Archived 2012-07-14 at the Wayback Machine. The Financial Times
  14. ^ Executive Profile - David H. Shaffer bloomberg.com
  15. ^ Howard, Jennifer (July 3, 2013) Publisher's Bankruptcy Filing Comes as Market for Print Textbooks Shrinks Archived 2015-05-12 at the Wayback Machine. The Chronicle of Higher Education
  16. ^ Borchers, Callum (April 01, 2014) Cengage exits bankruptcy, focuses on e-books in Boston Archived 2014-09-15 at the Wayback Machine. bostonglobe.com
  17. ^ Shulman, Eden (12 Feb, 2015) "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2015-05-02. Retrieved 2015-06-04.  BetaBoston - Boston Globe
  18. ^ MacFadyen, Ken (June 9, 2008) Thomson Course Technology Acquires Education To Go To Expand Continuing Education Offerings Archived 2016-01-29 at the Wayback Machine.
  19. ^ a b MacFadyen, Ken (June 9, 2008) Cengage Buys Houghton Mifflin's College Unit Archived 2015-06-05 at the Wayback Machine. themiddlemarket.com
  20. ^ Cengage Learning Acquired Gatlin Education Services. Was this a good decision?[permanent dead link] owler.com
  21. ^ Polanka, Sue (Dec 16, 2008) http://www.libraries.wright.edu/noshelfrequired/2008/12/16/highbeam-research-now-part-of-galecengage/ Archived June 5, 2015, at the Wayback Machine. No Shelf Required - Wright State University Libraries
  22. ^ "Cengage Acquires WebAssign, Strengthening Market Position in Science, Technology and Math". Cengage. 2016-09-27. Archived from the original on 2016-11-16. Retrieved 2016-11-15. 
  23. ^ "There’s a new way to find South-Western titles" Archived 2017-04-08 at the Wayback Machine., Cengage Learning. Retrieved April 8, 2017.
  24. ^ "The World's 57 Largest Book Publishers, 2015" Archived 2015-11-15 at the Wayback Machine. publishersweekly.com. Jun 26, 2015. Retrieved 2015-09-07.


External links