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Weekly News Digest

May 22, 2006 — In addition to this week's NewsBreaks article and the monthly NewsLink Spotlight, Information Today, Inc. (ITI) offers Weekly News Digests that feature recent product news and company announcements. Watch for additional coverage to appear in the next print issue of Information Today. For other up-to-the-minute news, check out ITIís Twitter account: @ITINewsBreaks.

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Castle Harlan to Acquire Baker & Taylor

Castle Harlan, Inc. (, a New York-based private equity investment firm, announced that a private-equity investment fund it organized and manages has agreed to buy privately-held Baker & Taylor ( in a transaction valued at $455 million. Baker & Taylor, founded in 1828, is a distributor of books, video, and music products to public and academic libraries. It also distributes books and entertainment products to many of the country's leading retailers, including Internet retailers, as well as thousands of independent book, music, and video stores.

Baker & Taylor is based in Charlotte, N.C., and is ranked in the top 200 U.S. private companies by Forbes magazine. It serves customers in 98 countries around the world and has six distribution facilities strategically located throughout the country.

Castle Harlan invests in controlling interests in the buyout and development of middle-market companies in North America and Europe. Castle Harlan's current portfolio companies include Ames True Temper, a manufacturer of lawn and garden tools; Horizon Lines, a shipping company; and Perkins Restaurant & Bakery.

The company is being sold by an investment partnership organized by Willis Stein & Partners (, a private equity firm in Chicago. It had acquired Baker & Taylor for $255 million in 2003 from The Carlyle Group (see the NewsBreak at Consummation of the transaction with Castle Harlan is contingent upon the satisfaction of customary legal and business conditions.

Source: Castle Harlan, Inc.

Send correspondence concerning the Weekly News Digest to NewsBreaks Editor Brandi Scardilli
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