Elsevier Acquires Newsflo To Add Media Monitoring To Its Academic Research Tool Mendeley

Educational publisher Elsevier has picked up another London startup to boost its tech-based portfolio of products that serve the academic community. It’s acquired Newsflo, a bespoke media monitoring service that enables academics to get ‘impact’ analytics for their published research, thus helping academic institutions keep track of media coverage and social media mentions, as an additional metric to more traditional citations.

Previously available only as a subscription service, the media monitoring features of Newsflo will now be rolled into Mendeley, the academic research tool and community that Elsevier acquired early in 2013 for a price TechCrunch pegged at between $69 million and $100 million.

Terms of Elsevier’s acquisition of Newsflo aren’t being disclosed, though I’m told that the startup’s two founders, Ben Kaube and Freddie Witherden (who were both PhD students at London’s Imperial College), are joining Elsevier for at least the next 18 months and will work out of Mendeley’s office, specifically and most immediately to integrate Newsflo-powered media mentions on individual researchers’ Mendeley profiles.

Launched in 2012, Newsflo’s academic-specific media monitoring service tracks over 55,000 English-speaking media sources, based on feeds from 20 or so countries, and plans to add more sources and languages post-acquisition. Its pitch to the academic institutions who subscribe to the service is that it enables them to provide additional evidence of the ‘societal impact’ of their research, something that can also be touted when competing for funding and attracting students.

Meanwhile, it’s easy to see how that metric will be attractive to individual researchers, too, many of whom are already users of Elsevier’s existing Mendeley product offering, so chalk this up as a smart acquisition for the Amsterdam-headquartered educational publisher.