Follett Higher Education Acquires Willo Labs
Acquisition will enhance students’ access to digital course materials while improving privacy controls, security, and scalability for institutions.
WESTCHESTER, ILL., Oct 17, 2022 – WESTCHESTER, Ill., Oct. 17, 2022 /PRNewswire/ — Follett Higher Education, North America’s largest campus retailer, today announced the acquisition of Indianapolis-based Willo Labs, the leading technology platform that gives campuses complete control over their digital learning access and makes it easier to achieve academic, equity, and total privacy goals with digital course materials.
“This is a tremendous opportunity for Follett to enhance its services for students and instructors, making their experience even more seamless and secure,” said Follett Higher Education CEO Emmanuel Kolady. “Willo is the best-performing course materials edtech platform out there. By bringing the company under the Follett Higher Education umbrella, we will be better positioned to support institutions, enhance security and privacy, and further strengthen the learning experience.”
Launched in 2016 by co-founders Andy Hall, Kate McKain, and Matt Hanger, Willo was designed to address the proliferation of digital learning platforms in higher education and K-12, which creates challenges and confusion for students, instructors, IT teams, and campus stores. The company has since expanded to more than 1,400 institutions in the United States and Canada.
Willo CEO and co-founder Andy Hall said, “We’re thrilled to partner with Follett Higher Education. Follett is a recognized leader in campus retail, course materials, and ecommerce with a focus on helping students and campuses succeed. This partnership will expand Willo’s reach to millions of students and build upon our mission to help learning institutions become champions of digital access and delivery.”
Willo’s platform makes it possible for institutions to access thousands of digital learning tools with a single LMS integration, allowing students to get all their learning materials quickly and easily with just one click. Willo also offers cutting-edge security and privacy features that will further ensure student data is fully protected, a leading priority for Follett Higher Education. With the integration of Willo, campus IT teams will no longer need to maintain hundreds of individual integrations with digital learning materials, leading to improved security and better student data privacy controls.
Additionally, bringing together Willo and Follett will make it easier than ever for institutions to manage increasingly-popular inclusive and equitable access programs that lower the cost of course materials and improve access for students. Today, Follett powers more than 300 inclusive and equitable access programs across North America.
Follett Higher Education President Ryan Petersen said, “Willo’s commitment to affordability has been made clear time and again through their transparent pricing that ensures the lowest possible costs for students and stores. We’re excited to bring this seamless digital platform with the most cost-effective pricing to Follett campuses, while simultaneously returning Follett to its roots by offering these services to the students and institutions served by independent campus stores.”
Over the coming months, Follett will integrate the Willo platform into Follett ACCESS, online, and in-store experiences to offer simple access to digital course materials, as well as improved privacy controls, while maintaining the Brytewave e-reader experience students know and love.
To learn more about this partnership, visit http://Follett.com/willo
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About Follett Higher Education | www.highered.follett.com
Follett Higher Education is a leading educational service provider and omnichannel retailer providing students, faculty, parents, fans, and staff the course materials, learning tools and retail services needed to successfully support the academic, athletic, and collegiate journey. Follett Higher Education supports over 6 million students through its 1,100 physical and 1,750 eCommerce collegiate retail stores across North America.
About Follett ACCESS
Follett ACCESS is a course materials distribution model that embraces affordability and equity that leads to improvements in access, retention, and student well-being. It levels the playing field by providing all required course materials to all students on the first day of class. Instructors have complete academic freedom to select whatever materials are best for their course, including Open Educational Resources (OER). All digital content is accessible directly in the school Learning Management System (LMS) on the first day of class and listed in the course registration system.
About Willo Labs
Willo Labs provides a single connection and platform for colleges, schools and digital content providers to link and manage digital course materials in the learning management system (LMS). Willo Labs is connected to over 1,400 institutions in the United States and Canada. Learn more at https://www.willolabs.com/