At National Geographic Learning, it seems that every year brings growth, learning, change and new experiences, and 2014 was no exception.
There were of course many other highlights, but ultimately they all come down to a year of progress—progress that we do not take for granted and on which we want to improve. We hope that 2015 is a rewarding year for you and that we see you during it. If you will be at TESOL in Toronto, please come to our reception, which by the way is on Friday night this year.
- We continued to see strong growth in our sales through the success of major new series like Life, Great Writing, Our World, Reading Explorer, Pathways and World English—among others. This success was experienced in both American and British English markets, in all regions and with all ages from primary through adult.
- ELTeach, our digital professional development program and partnership with ETS, grew dramatically and has now served over 15,000 teachers worldwide. The satisfaction and success rate with this program is extraordinary. We can say with confidence, and more importantly with data, that this program delivers valuable skills to teachers that enable them to teach English in English.
- We began building our first products through our partnership with TED, the non-profit organization dedicated to spreading ideas through powerful "talks." TED elevates oral presentations to an art form and is an extraordinary resource for language learners. We are delighted to be able to work with them and to already have integrated their material into the second edition of World English. We are also thrilled to be in the process of publishing the exciting 21st Century Reading Series, as well as two other series that we will be publishing.
- We held major conferences for over 200 educators in Tokyo, Cancun and Muscat around the theme of "English, Learning and the 21st Century." These were not commercial events at which we sold books. They were designed to foster the communication of ideas and a closer relationship with the teachers and administrators who are ultimately responsible for making education successful. We brought National Geographic explorers and photographers, educational experts and TED speakers to present, and we also had open forums for the exchange of ideas. The response to these conferences has been overwhelmingly enthusiastic. We have learned so much and look forward to expanding this program in the years ahead.
- Within Cengage, we moved from the U.S. group into the International division and reorganized to form a single global business unit. This reflects the global nature of what we do, as well as our growing scale, and it will enable us to be more focused and effective. To our customers, we hope this will simply mean better communication, better service and better products.
Best wishes for the year,