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College students can now get all their textbooks for less than $180 per year. You can thank Michael Hansen for that

For creating a revolutionary (and affordable) rental model for college textbooks, Cengage CEO Michael Hansen is one of Fast Company’s Most Creative People of 2020.

College students can now get all their textbooks for less than $180 per year. You can thank Michael Hansen for that

“There are virtually no markets in the world where course materials are as expensive as they are in the United States,” says Cengage CEO Michael Hansen. To address this, he launched a pioneering subscription model for textbook financing in the fall of 2018 that allows students to pay $179.99 a year for access to all of the texts in the company’s 22,000-book catalog. The format is made possible by Cengage’s history as a textbook publisher; Hansen took its deep education catalog online without ever having to pay for rights to new material. By March 2020, Cengage Unlimited had reached 2.6 million subscribers. The company estimates that the service is present at every higher education institution in the country, has a bigger slice of the college textbook market than McGraw-Hill, and has so far saved students $200 million.

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