Education Industry Sees 415 Mergers & Acquisitions, Worth Nearly $18 Billion, in 2015

EXIT PATTERNS: The transaction train is ploughing full speed ahead. In 2015, investment bank Berkery Noyes counted 415 mergers and acquisitions in the education industry, with an estimated combined value of $17.75 billion. Compared to 2014, that’s a 26 percent increase in deal volume (329) and a 52 percent leap in transaction value ($11.68 billion).

Source: Berkery Noyes

The top transaction in 2015? TGP Capital and Leonard Green & Partners’ $3.5 billion acquisition of Ellucian, a provider of data analytics solutions to higher-ed institutions, followed by LinkedIn’s purchase of Lynda.com for $1.5 billion.

A breakdown by different market segments shows that the majority of transactions remain focused on the “Professional Training Services” sector. “K-12 Media and Tech” isn’t far behind, with deal volume also increasing every year since 2013. But the biggest year-over-year spike in deal volume went to “Higher-Ed Media and Tech” transactions, such as Cengage’s acquisition of Pathbrite.

Source: Berkery Noyes

“The largest area of activity in 2015 was in the corporate and professional education space as the need for continuing education and workforce development continues to expand while technology has improved the delivery and efficacy of instruction, Peter Yoon, Managing Director at Berkery Noyes, said in a statement. Deals in the K-12 space, he added, tend to center on companies addressing “data and assessment, content management systems, and human capital and talent management.”

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