Strategic Education to buy Laureate Australia and NZ schools for $643 million
Strategic Education has announced that it will be acquiring Laureate Education’s institutions in Australia and New Zealand for US $643 million.
American education services company Strategic Education Inc shared that it had entered a ‘definitive agreement’ to purchase Laureate Education Inc’s network of institutions in Australia and New Zealand.
Strategic Education, Inc., is an education services holding company headquartered in Herndon, Virginia, in the United States. Strategic Education’s portfolio of institutions currently includes the for-profit Capella University and Strayer University.
Laureate Education, parent firm of the Laureate International Universities network, owns and operates 3 higher education institutions in Australia and New Zealand – Torrens University Australia, Think Education in Australia and Media Design School in New Zealand.
3 Laureate ANZ schools will now be run by Strategic Education
Once the transaction is finalised, Torrens University Australia, Think Education and Media Design School will be run by Strategic Education in ANZ.
Combined, the 3 Laureate ANZ institutions have around 19,000 students enrolled across their technical, undergraduate and postgraduate courses.
Torrens University, which was founded by Laureate in 2014, was the first new university to open in Australia in 20 years.
Think Education joined the Laureate International Universities network in 2013, seven years after it was originally established.
Media Design School, based in Auckland, was founded in New Zealand and became part of the Laureate network in 2011.
Strategic Education ‘excited’ to enter Australia and New Zealand markets
The statement of acquisition noted the agreed purchase price as being US $642.7 million.
The notice added that the deal “is subject to certain closing adjustments based on the aggregate working capital and indebtedness and on forecasted performance” and is subject to customary closing conditions, including approval by relevant Australian and New Zealand authorities and a mutual right of termination based on the occurrence of a material adverse change in certain forecasted performance.”
Reflecting on the acquisition, Karl McDonnell, Chief Executive Officer of Strategic Education Inc, said: “We’re excited to be expanding our business into the Australian and New Zealand markets. We have been impressed by the growth and impact the three Laureate institutions have made and look forward to welcoming Torrens University, Think Education and Media Design School into our network.”
Eilif Serck-Hanssen, CEO and President of Laureate Education, said: “This transaction is an outgrowth of the process Laureate initiated earlier this year to explore strategic alternatives for each of its business units.
“We’re incredibly proud of what our Australian and New Zealand teams have achieved – from establishing Australia’s first new university in two decades, to consistently delivering quality student learning experiences with high employability outcomes.
“We have built a highly efficient student centric culture focused on strong ties to employers and community partners – and we have been rewarded with robust growth and student loyalty.
“Under the stewardship of Strategic Education, Inc., I’m confident that our institutions will continue to be supported in delivering on their mission of providing highly innovative programs with high student satisfaction and strong outcomes.”
Torrens University Australia, Think Education, and Media Design School, are to remain part of the Laureate International Universities network until the finalisation of the transaction, which is expected to occur in Q1 2021.