McGraw-Hill Opens Ebook, Textbook Rentals with B&N Education, MBS, Chegg

In News by Porter Anderson

Promising as much as 70-percent savings over ‘the costs of traditional bound print textbooks,’ McGraw-Hill Education is teaming with Barnes & Noble Education, MBS Textbook Exchange, and Chegg on an ebook and textbook rental program.

Image – iStockphoto: Wavebreak Media

By Porter Anderson, Editor-in-Chief | @Porter_Anderson

‘Shifting the Way We Deliver’

As Publishing Perspectives has reported, Michael Hansen and Cengage this year will make the company’s full 20,000-title catalogue available to students in an “all you can learn” model, a subscription called Cengage Unlimited.

This month, McGraw-Hill Education moves in a new direction, too, expanding its options to include what it describes as a new textbook and ebook rental program for more than 250 of its titles copyrighted 2019—and all forthcoming titles.

In a prepared statement, the company says that some rentals will be available as early as this spring through the e-commerce channel on as well as through selected distributors.

New titles will be available to “approved distributors,” the company says in media material, “on a consignment basis for their own rental programs at prices that are significantly lower than what they pay on a wholesale basis today.

Apparently all distributors are approved, as the announcement goes on to say that the program is “open to all distributors of McGraw-Hill Education’s higher education textbooks.”

At the time of its messaging to the press, McGraw-Hill Education reported finalizing agreements with Barnes & Noble Education—through Barnes & Noble College and MBS Textbook Exchange subsidiaries—and with Chegg. Additional distributor discussions are reported to be ongoing.

The publisher says that the savings could be significant for students, amounting to “as much as 70 percent off the costs of traditional bound print textbooks.”

In a prepared statement, Bill Okun, higher education president, is quoted, saying, “For us, it’s about driving real value for students and instructors while preserving choice.

“We want to help students be more successful and instructors achieve their teaching goals, at an affordable price that meets their needs. By shifting the way we deliver hardbound textbooks, we’re providing another important option to access McGraw-Hill’s … content and curriculum at a lower price.”

Speaking for Barnes & Noble College, its president, Patrick Maloney talks of “expanding our robust offering of rental titles for the students we serve.

“Offering a wide array of affordable course material options for our students and faculty,” Maloney says, “is a top priority for Barnes & Noble College. In partnering with McGraw-Hill Education on this new rental program, we can leverage our nearly 1,485 campus bookstores to ensure students have access to the affordable materials they need to succeed in the classroom.”

“By shifting the way we deliver hardbound textbooks, we’re providing another important option to access McGraw-Hill’s  … content and curriculum at a lower price.”Bill Okun

David Henderson, president of MBS Textbook Exchange, is also quoted, saying, “MBS will seamlessly integrate McGraw-Hill Education’s rental titles into the ordering process for all bookstores we service, providing a streamlined ordering and distribution process for our clients. More importantly, this will provide our clients greater access to affordable course material options for their students.”

And at Chegg, chief learning officer Nathan Schultz is quoted, saying, “Removing barriers for students and saving them money while they pursue their educational paths have always been core pillars to our mission. By partnering with McGraw-Hill Education, we continue to expand our relationship with partners to provide students with excellent course materials at an excellent price.”

Through the cooperative effort with Barnes & Nobel Education, MBS, and Chegg, McGraw-Hill sees its program reaching more than 6 million students and instructors through 1,485 physical and virtual campus bookstores, 3,700 MBS stores, and Chegg’s learning platform which reports 10 million unique visitors per month.

More coverage of Publishing Perspectives’ coverage of textbooks is here.

About the Author

Porter Anderson

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Porter Anderson has been named International Trade Press Journalist of the Year in London Book Fair's International Excellence Awards. He is Editor-in-Chief of Publishing Perspectives. He formerly was Associate Editor for The FutureBook at London's The Bookseller. Anderson was for more than a decade a senior producer and anchor with, CNN International, and CNN USA. As an arts critic (Fellow, National Critics Institute), he was with The Village Voice, the Dallas Times Herald, and the Tampa Tribune, now the Tampa Bay Times. He co-founded The Hot Sheet, a newsletter for authors, which now is owned and operated by Jane Friedman.