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July 2001

Dear Editor,

With the news just released that Reed Elsevier�s acquisition of the
Harcourt publishing businesses has been approved by the competition
authorities in the US and UK, we wanted to inform you immediately
about our plans.  For Elsevier Science this means that we will bring
the Harcourt scientific, technical and medical (STM) publishing and
our existing businesses together as one.  We are delighted about this
and intend to ensure that it means improved products and services and
increased value for scientists and libraries.  I would like to give
you some insight into how we will do this.

The combined business will focus entirely on scientific, technical and
medical publishing.  We believe that Harcourt STM and Elsevier Science
are an excellent match in terms of culture and business.  The products
and people in the Harcourt scientific, technical and medical
publishing businesses reflect the Elsevier Science commitment to
quality and value.

The name of our combined business will be Elsevier Science.  We have
created two divisions: Science & Technology and Health Sciences, both
operating under the Elsevier Science name.  In the Science &
Technology Division we will add the journals, books and major
reference works published under the Academic Press imprint to our
existing portfolio.  In addition to existing Elsevier Science products
and imprints, such as The Lancet and Excerpta Medica, the Health
Sciences Division will include the well-known imprints of
W.B. Saunders, Mosby and Churchill Livingstone, as well as MD Consult.

Our business strategy will continue as before.  We want your
publications to be as widely accessible and widely-read as possible.
Our mission is to make all of our scientific material available to
researchers on their desktops, 24 hours a day, wherever they are in
the world.

We will retain the integrity and editorial independence of all
journals.  We will not close down any journals as a direct result of
the merger.  Contracts with editors and authors in general will not
change.

Our market-leading electronic platform, ScienceDirect�, is evidence of
our commitment to invest in quality products.  We will continue these
investments in the combined business.  The first step is to create
access through ScienceDirect to all the journal titles from the
Harcourt portfolio as soon as possible.  This will enable the widest
possible access to your journal.  Elsevier Science will also honour
all existing contracts for the IDEAL platform.

The commitment we made two years ago to keeping price rises to a
single digit figure for the complete print package of our journals,
incorporating the effects of currency fluctuations, growth in volume
output and inflation, will also apply to the extended portfolio.  This
should result in lower price increases for Harcourt journals than in
the past and also below the industry average, in line with Elsevier
Science�s policy.

Over the coming months we will keep you informed about the progress
being made in bringing together the competencies and people of
Harcourt and Elsevier Science.

Scientific publishing is going through a period of rapid change as a
result of electronic publishing.  At Elsevier Science we are very
excited about the possibilities it offers to enhance the role that
scientific literature plays in the research process.  I enclose the
transcript of a presentation I made earlier this year, which should
give you a flavour of our current thinking on how we can move forward
to reap the full benefits of electronic publishing.

I would like to thank you for your work and dedication on your
journal.  If you have any further questions, please do not hesitate to
ask your regular contacts at Elsevier Science and Harcourt.
 
Yours sincerely,

Derk Haank
Chairman
Elsevier Science