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Berkery Noyes Releases Third Quarter 2011 Mergers & Acquisitions Update For The Education Industry

Monday, October 24, 2011

Berkery Noyes, the leading independent investment bank specializing in the information content and technology industries, today released its Third Quarter 2011 Mergers and Acquisitions Update for the Education Industry.

The report analyzes merger and acquisition activity over the first three quarters of 2011 and compares it with activity in 2010. This market includes information and technology companies servicing the education industry, including K-12, post-secondary, and professional segments.

According to Berkery Noyes research, the report showed that third quarter 2011 transaction volume increased 12 percent over the second quarter. Transaction value increased 241 percent, as five of the top ten 2011 deals by value occurred in the third quarter.

The largest transaction for both the third quarter and year-to-date was Hellman & Friedman’s announced acquisition of SunGard Higher Education from SunGard Data Systems for $1.78 billion. This will result in a merger under a new holding company with Datatel, an existing Hellman & Friedman portfolio company.

The most active acquirer through third quarter 2011 was Pearson with six acquisitions, two of which were in the third quarter: Connections Education and Stark Verlag.

Median EBITDA multiples from 2010 through the first nine months of 2011 went from 11.4 to 10.1, an 11 percent decrease, while median revenue multiples rose from 1.9 to 2.0, a 5 percent increase.

“M&A volume started to look up during the third quarter when a number of large deals were announced,” said John Shea, managing partner at Berkery Noyes. Hellman & Friedman’s announced plans to acquire SunGard Data Systems' higher education segment and Providence Equity’s acquisition of Blackboard are greater in value than what’s been done in the entire first half. These transactions highlight the innovation that digital technologies are bringing to both the K-12 sector as well as institutions of higher education.”

Berkery Noyes specializes in Mergers & Acquisitions advisory services, in addition to structuring debt and equity transactions in the $25 million to $500 million range. Unique among investment banking firms, Berkery Noyes combines independent strategic research and industry intelligence with senior information technology banking expertise. Long having been an innovator in database and research technology in M&A, Berkery Noyes has committed itself to providing more expansive and more current information. The firm’s research teams publish acquisition activity in the respective sectors they follow on MandAsoft.com.

A copy of the THIRD QUARTER 2011 EDUCATION INDUSTRY MERGERS & ACQUISITIONS UPDATE is available at the Berkery Noyes website.