"We originally published African-American fiction and nonfiction and business-related nonfiction. Then in 2006, we bought Surrey Books, a 25-year-old Chicago-based publisher devoted to food, dining, entertaining, and nutrition. We took our original two content areas and created imprints. The African-American imprint is called Bolden, the business-related one is B2. We kept 'Surrey Books' as the name for our food-and-dining imprint.
"Around that same time, some former colleagues of mine from a folded dot-com reached out to me about creating their own content for the schools where they then worked. I saw this as a business opportunity, so we created a new business called ProBooks. ProBooks is essentially a digital content service that creates resources and courses for textbook publishing companies and for-profit education companies.
"We finally moved out of the basement to a leafy corner in south Evanston in May 2010. This was just in time for a significant growth spurt in the company. At the time we had four staff members, and now we have 17.
"We've also created two new imprints.
Full story at Chicago Reader