Valuations for vocational schools and training companies are at record highs now. As business performance rebounds, buyers are competing for strong performing businesses. That has led to an increase in the number of education-related businesses that were sold in Q3 of 2021. The number of education deals that closed in the third quarter increased 17% over the previous quarter, and 11% from the same quarter in 2020, according to Jackim Woods & Co, which tracks and analyzes vocational school and training company sale transactions.
2021 Education Industry Seller Confidence Index
Valuations for vocational schools and training companies are at record highs now because seller confidence is up. As the economy rebounds, owners of vocational schools and training companies are returning to the market, feeling more confident they can sell their schools and training companies for a good price and less willing to wait until the COVID pandemic is over. Seller confidence increased to 57 out of 70; that’s up from 45 in 2020. This is the highest seller confidence level since the high of 58 in 2018. Today 49% of the respondents believe they can receive a higher sale price for their school or training company today compared to a year ago, and 46% of respondents said the top factor motivating their confidence was an improvement in enrollment and revenue.
The average revenue for vocational schools and training businesses that were sold in the third quarter was $755,000, up 6% from the same time last year. Meanwhile, buyers of education-related businesses, especially Title IV schools, are paying record-high prices for businesses that performed well during the pandemic. The average sale price in the third quarter hit a new high of $1,780,000; that’s 17% higher than the previous year and 40% above pre-pandemic levels.
With current valuations above where they were pre-pandemic, many school owners are thinking now may be the right time to exit.
2021 Education Industry Buyer Confidence Index
Valuations for vocational schools and training companies are also at record highs because buyer confidence is up. Buyers noted that there is a limited supply of profitable well-run schools and training businesses on the market. In addition, several buyers noted that because of the shift to online learning, schools will be able to expand their geographic reach while reducing the cost of delivering educational services. The combination of these two factors signals significant growth opportunities and higher margins for well-run schools and training companies in the future. As a result, buyer confidence increased to 60, up significantly from 48 in 2020 and only slightly above the buyer confidence level of 59 in 2018.
It is interesting to note that demand for high-performing vocational schools and training businesses is increasing. According to Rich Jackim, Managing Partner of Jackim Woods & Co., “buyer inquiries on our education-related listings are up 39% since the same time last year. However, many business owners are putting off selling until their schools or training companies have fully recovered, so the supply of profitable, well-run schools is still limited. This is driving up values and makes it a sellers’ market.”
If you are beginning to think about selling your training business or Title IV vocational school and would like to explore your options, please contact Rich Jackim at firstname.lastname@example.org for a FREE, confidential, no-obligation consultation.Read More
As business performance rebounds, buyers are competing for strong performing businesses. That has led to an increase in the number of businesses that were acquired in Q3 of 2021. The number of closed transactions in the third quarter increased 17% over the previous quarter, and 11% from the same quarter in 2020, according to BizBuySell’s Insight Report, which tracks and analyzes U.S. business sale transactions. The report also includes an analysis of survey responses from over 2,000 business owners, business buyers, and business brokers.
2021 Seller Confidence Index
As the economy rebounds, sellers are returning to the market, feeling more confident they can sell their businesses for a good price and less willing to wait until the COVID pandemic is over. Seller confidence increased to 57 out of 70, up from 45 in 2020. This is the highest seller confidence level since the high of 58 in 2018. 49% of the respondents believe they can receive a higher sale price today compared to a year ago, and 46% of respondents said the top factor motivating their confidence was improved sales or revenue.
The average revenue for businesses sold in the third quarter was $671,000, up 6% from the same time last year. Meanwhile, buyers are paying record-high prices for businesses that have continued to perform well during the pandemic. The average sale price in the third quarter hit a new high of $350,000; that’s 17% above the previous year and 40% above pre-pandemic levels.
With current business valuations higher than they were pre-pandemic, many business owners are thinking now may be the right time to exit.
2021 Buyer Confidence Index
Buyers noted that there is a limited supply of profitable well-run businesses on the market and they regret missing out on buying last year while prices were lower. As a result, buyer confidence fell to 48 out of 70, down significantly from 60 in 2020 and slightly above the buyer confidence level of 47 in 2018.
It is interesting to note that demand for high-performing businesses is increasing. According to Rich Jackim, Managing Partner of Jackim Woods & Co., “buyer inquiries on our listings are up 33% since the same time last year. However, many business owners are putting off selling until their businesses fully recover, so the supply of profitable, well-run businesses is still limited. This is driving up values and makes it a sellers’ market.”
If you are beginning to think about selling your business and would like to explore your options, please contact Rich Jackim at email@example.com for a FREE, confidential, no-obligation consultation.Read More
The number of businesses that were acquired continued to rebound with the number of closed transactions in the third quarter up 17% over the previous quarter and up over 11% year-over-year. That’s according to BizBuySell’s Q3 Insight Report, which tracks and analyzes U.S. business-for-sale transactions.
Sellers are returning to the market, feeling more confident they can receive a good price and less willing to wait as the effects of the COVID pandemic linger on, including supply chain disruptions and staffing shortages.
Seller confidence index increased to 57 in 2021, up from 45 in 2020, which is the highest mark since the high of 58 in 2018. Of those surveyed, 49% of business owners felt they could receive a higher sale price today compared to a year ago, and 46% said the top factor that influenced their decision to sell was improved sales and revenue.
“The number of active sellers in the market is still lower than in previous years, but we have definitely seen an uptick in new clients since 2020. The shortage of good companies for sale, combined with low interest rates and a stock market at all-time highs has driven up the value of the companies that are currently for sale,” said Richard Jackim, Managing Partner of Jackim Woods & Co.
The total value of mergers and acquisitions in the education sector increased by more than 50% from the second half of 2020 to the second half of 2021, as companies across the industry rushed to add education-related companies to their portfolios, according to a report by mergers and acquisitions advisory firm, Jackim Woods & Co.
Jackim Woods & Co. is a mergers and acquisitions firm that provides advice and financial consulting to middle-market companies in the education sector.
The overall number of individual M&A transactions also rebounded to pre-pandemic levels.
Buyers of education companies closed 210 mergers in the first half of 2020, and 240 acquisitions during the first six months of 2021.
The total value of acquisitions in the education sector between January and June was $19.4 billion, largely driven by Platinum Equity’s $6.4-billion acquisition of McGraw Hill, the report noted.
The market value of deals closed during the first half of 2021 had almost as much market value as all the deals closed during all of 2020.
Private equity-sponsored transactions accounted for 40% of deals during the first six months of 2021. That’s 8% higher than the average number of private equity-backed deals for the last three years.
According to Jackim Woods & Co, 97 of the 240 deals during this time frame were sponsored or financed by financial investors like private equity, venture capital, or other investment firms. That’s the highest number in three years and a 130% increase over the first half of 2020.
Twelve deals during the first half of 2020 had purchase prices of more than $100 million, and at least seven of those involved the K-12 sector. About 33% of the deals had purchase prices of between $4.5 million and $54.6 million.
The K-12 EdTeh segment surpassed the professional training services sector as the education industry’s most active market segment in the first half of 2021.
Approximately 50 deals involved the acquisition of professional training companies in the second half of 2019 and about 45 deals covered professional training services in the first half of 2021. There were approximately 40 deals in the K-12 EdTech segment in the second half of 2020, while nearly 60 deals closed in that segment in the first half of 2021.
For other segments of the education sector, the analysis showed a mixed picture of market activity for the first six months of this year compared to the second half of 2020.
The number of deals in the childcare services and higher-education EdTech segments increased during this period, but the number of deals in professional training technology, higher-ed institutions (including Title IV vocational schools), and K-20 services decreased. Deals involving for-profit K-12 schools remained stable.
According to Rich Jackim, Managing Partner of Jackim Woods & Co, “we are seeing strong demand for Title IV vocational schools that prepare students for careers in the healthcare professions. We’re also seeing strong demand for non-Title IV schools, like commercial driving schools and cybersecurity and programming schools. Valuations for these schools have increased significantly over the last 24 months.”
In addition to the McGraw Hill acquisition, the most interesting education sector deals in the first half of 2021 included
- Byju’s $900 million acquisition of Indian tutoring company Aakash Educational Services
- Renaissance’s $650 million acquisition of Nearpod
- Kahoot’s $435 million acquisition of K-12 secure-sign-on provider Clever
If you own an education-related business, including a Title IV college or vocational school, a k-12 proprietary school, or an EdTech company and are beginning to think about selling, we would be delighted to speak with you and help you explore your options.
Contact Rich Jackim, Managing Partner of Jackim Woods & Co at 224-513-5142 or firstname.lastname@example.org.Read More
Alpin Haus, an outdoor recreation powerhouse in New York, announced the acquisition of Garick RV in Oak Ridge, NJ.
Alpin Haus, started as a small family-owned business in 1964, is one of the leading outdoor recreational retailers in the northeast and employs over 200 people across five locations. They feature a full line of RVs, snowmobiles, skis, boats, pools, and spas.
With the acquisition of Garick RV, Alpin Haus now has six locations and its first location outside the state of New York.
Garick RV’s founder, Gary Threlfall said, “I’m excited to find a buyer like Alpin Haus that shares the same core values which I founded Garick RV on over 35 year ago. I’m confident Garick’s customers and employees are in good hands with Alpin Haus.”
Founded in the spring of 1983 by two high school friends as a RV rental company, Garick RV bloomed into a dealership with a sales center and a 10-bay service center employing over 20 people.
“Garick RV has an outstanding reputation, and this acquisition provides an additional platform to offer Alpin Haus’ services and products,” said Andy Heck, President of Alpin Haus.
“Our companies’ core foundations of providing outstanding customer service align exceptionally well,” Heck said. “We are excited to grow beyond our state borders and we look forward to serving this expanded market for years to come.”
Jim Bates, Partner, at Jackim Woods & Co. (www.jackimwoods.com) a middle market mergers & acquisitions firm with years of experience working with a variety of recreational vehicle companies represented Garick RV in the sale and played a key role in managing the transaction.Read More
M&A deal activity has recovered from its 9-month pandemic-related dip. Based on the overall strength of the stock market, we expect continued strong mergers and acquisitions activity for 2021 as well.
The total dollar value of mergers and acquisitions announced in the U.S. fell to roughly $20 billion in March as the pandemic set in, according to data from Barrons. That was a sharp drop-off—from about $180 billion in January. Yet the recovery has been equally sharp. Deal volumes reached approximately $205 billion in October according to Barron’s data.
Looking forward, Rich Jackim, managing partner at Jackim Woods & Company said, “low-interest rates, optimism about a COVID vaccine, record-breaking fundraising by Special Purpose Acquisition Companies (SPACs), and even a less contentious global trade policy will all contribute to continued strong M&A activity in 2021.”
Interest rates are currently at historic lows, reducing the cost of funding acquisitions. In addition, the good news about several COVID vaccines provides a light at the end of the tunnel and the assurance that buyers need to make a purchase.
And SPACS—special purpose acquisition corporations that raise money through an initial public offering in order to buy other companies—have raised more than $64 billion this year. SPACs raised just $13 billion in all of 2019, suggesting that SPACs will be the new driver of middle-market M&A activity in 2021.
“The M&A wave is regaining momentum and should continue for the next 12-18 months,” Jackim says. He believes the following industries will see an uptick in M&A activity in 2021.
2021 will be a year of recovery as retail and restaurant workers displaced by COVID-related closures seek other careers and gainful employment. As a result, Jackim believes the vocational/technical training and education sector will of interest to buyers and investors. The US has been suffering from a shortage of skilled workers for over a decade, so there are plenty of high paying jobs available for people with the right skills. Enrollment in vocational programs tends to rise as unemployment rises, so we expect 2021 to build on the strong results that the technical education industry saw in 2020, and to attract renewed interest from both financial and strategic buyers and investors.
The energy industry is another industry where we expect to see a lot of M&A activity in 2021. The price of crude oil has dropped to just above $40 a barrel since early summer, nowhere near the $63 a barrel price at the beginning of the year. At the same time, the rise of clean energy and potential regulation are threatening companies that focus on traditional fossil fuels. As the fossil fuel industry shifts toward a lower-growth model, exploration and production companies will be looking to generate returns through acquisitions that would yield economies of scale and other benefits, or diversify their product or service offerings away from fossil fuels.
Fueled by a multi-billion-dollar deal, the value of mergers and acquisitions in the education sector increased by more than 80% in the first half of 2020, even though the number of transactions dropped to a 30-month low, a new report by Jackim Woods & Co finds.
Overall, the market value of deals in the education sector increased from $4.9 billion in the first half of 2019 to $9 billion during the same period in 2020, according to research by the mergers and acquisitions firm, Jackim Woods & Co.
Jackim Woods & Co is an investment banking firm that provides advice and financial consulting to middle-market companies in the education sector.
Their analysis tracked 1,128 education sector deals between 2018 and June 2020.
Sixty-six percent of that total came from Blackstone’s $6 billion acquisition of student housing company iQ Student Accommodation, which has been described as the largest-ever private real estate deal in the United Kingdom.
Meanwhile, overall dealmaking activity in the education sector slowed significantly due to COVID-19 shutdowns and concerns about the long-term impact it would have on the sector. Jackim Woods & Co tracked 207 mergers and acquisitions in the education sector during the first six months of the year, down from 242 during the same period last year.
That figure also represents the fewest number of total deals for a six-month stretch since at least the beginning of 2018, the period covered in the report by Jackim Woods & Co.
The overall dip in the number of mergers and acquisitions during the first half of 2020 was due to a steep decline in private equity sponsored deals. According to Rich Jackim, Managing Partner at Jackim Woods & Co, only 41 of the 207 deals closed during the first six months of 2020 were financed by private equity firms or other financial investors. That’s the lowest number of deals closed in the 30-month period the report covered and a 50% decrease compared to the same period in 2019.
Only seven deals in the first six months of 2020 were valued at more than $100 million, and at least two were in the K-12 sector. About 33% of the total transactions had values in the range of $4.5 million to $54.6 million.
The sector of the education industry that saw the most activity in the first half of 2020 was the professional training services category, which rose from 44 to 60 transactions. That accounted for nearly 30% of all deals during the first six months and marked the most transactions closed for the sector since 2018.
Activity in almost every other segment of the education industry tracked by Jackim Woods & Co — aside from the professional training sector — was down compared to the first half of 2019, according to the report. That includes sectors specific to K-12 institutions and the K-12 EdTech space, which includes companies that provide media and software used in schools.
The most interesting K-12 deals during 2020 include
• China Maple Leaf Education System’s $487 million acquisition of Singapore’s Canadian International School;
• K12 Inc.’s $165 million acquisition of Galvanize, a Denver-based company that offers coding boot camp programs; and
• Chegg’s $96 million acquisition of the math problem-solving app Mathway.
If you own an education-related business, including a Title IV vocational school, K-12 school, or EdTech company, and are thinking about selling, we would be delighted to speak with you and help you explore your options.
Contact Rich Jackim, Managing Partner of Jackim Woods & Co at 224-513-5142 or at email@example.com.Read More
Private equity investors have shown strong interest in education-focused companies in the last few years, and not just in edtech companies. Several things are responsible for this renewed interest.
- For the last 10 years, digital transformations in the classroom have caused the ed-tech market to soar and have led to an increased interest in all types of education-related investments.
- The U.S. faces a significant skill shortage across the board as our population gets older and as our society emphasizes professional careers over skilled-based careers. This had led to severe shortages in healthcare, the trades, and transportation.
- Approximately 30% of for-profit career colleges or vocational schools went out of business between 2008 and 2016, removing excess capacity from the post-secondary landscape, which led to a resurgence of interest from private equity groups.
- For the last four years, both the Republican administration and the Democratic Congress supported private education, which resulted in an upsurge in funding by federal, state, and local governments.
On top of that, the education industry is very fragmented, with many early childhood centers, career colleges, and training companies still owned by individuals, leaving private equity firms a lot of room for roll-ups to consolidate the industry and realize significant economies of scale.
In addition, the K-12 market has become more complicated, with new technologies rapidly changing the game. So having the right people in charge who know how to design and implement digital learning platforms is increasingly important, representing a unique opportunity for private equity and other tech-savvy investors. As a result, buyers and investors are spending more and more time developing world-class management teams to ensure their portfolio companies can provide teachers and students with the digital platforms and technical support they need to succeed.
For the past decade or so, buyers have been hesitant to invest in post-secondary education companies — ever since the Great Recession and implementing the Gainful Employment Rule during the Obama administration. However, things have turned around completely in the last four years for several reasons, including…
- Over 200 poorly run for-profit career colleges closed their doors before the 2017-18 academic year — continuing a long downward trend. But happily, at the well-run schools that survived, enrollment and revenue are rising again.
- The regulatory environment is more favorable because the Gainful Employment Rule has been greatly scaled back – even though it remains on the books for now.
- Most for-profit career schools are demonstrating better results regarding educational outcomes like gainful employment, making them more appealing to investors no matter the level of regulatory oversight.
- The education sector tends to do well in a recession. In general, post-secondary education does well when the economy slows down and unemployed people go back to schools, so education-related companies are a good hedge against recession in any investor’s portfolio.
- Valuations of early childhood centers, K-12 schools, and career colleges remain reasonable compared to other education sub-sectors like edtech.
- It isn’t just investors who’re interested in this space – lenders have returned as well. For example, Renovus Capital financed the Rasmussen acquisition with SunTrust, CIBC, and Bank of Ireland. NCK Capital financed its purchase of Tricoci in partnership with Greyrock Capital Group and NBH Bank.
That’s all good news for owners of education-related companies. Here are just a few of the deals in the education sector over the last few years —
- The Learning Experience, was purchased by Golden Gate Capital Partners Group-backed KinderCare Education, acquired Troy, Michigan-based Rainbow Child Care Center from Quad-C Management.
- Rasmussen College, a healthcare-focused career college system with 10,000 students across 22 campuses, was acquired by Renovus Capital Partners.
- The University of St. Augustine was acquired by Toronto’s Altas Partners in a deal worth $400 million.
- Allied Business Schools, which offers online real estate certification classes, was acquired by Colibri Group and Quad-C Management.
- Chicago-based Tricoci University of Beauty Culture was acquired by Dallas’s NCK Capital.
- Texas County Technical College in Houston, Missouri, was acquired by Arizona College.
- The National Business Institute of Florida was acquired by a private investor.
If you own an early childhood center, a Title IV career college, or a corporate training program and are interested in potentially selling, contact us at 224-513-5142 for a free, confidential, no-obligation discussion about the current market and your options.
About the author: Rich Jackim, the managing partner of Jackim Woods & Co, is an experienced M&A attorney, investment banker, business broker who has sold over 100 businesses. He is also an education sector entrepreneur who founded and sold a professional training company, so he understands the industry and the sales process from both an owner and a buyer’s perspective. If you are thinking of selling your early childhood center, K-12 school, career college, or training program, he would be happy to speak with you. His direct dial number is 224-513-5142, and his email is firstname.lastname@example.org.Read More
Veritext, the national leader in court reporting and litigation support solutions, announced that it has acquired David Feldman Worldwide (DFW) Court Reporting. DFW’s experience with very complex litigation cases and exemplary customer service complements Veritext’s full breadth of technical solutions and world-class data security. Together they will offer clients of both companies premier court reporting and litigation support solutions.
“DFW’s expertise in very complex litigation fits well with the experience and advanced technology Veritext brings to the table,” said Nancy Josephs, Chief Executive Officer of Veritext. Clients of DFW will have immediate access to Veritext’s state-of-the-art deposition suites, multimedia depositions, document repositories, remote depositions, online and mobile scheduling, paperless depositions and more. In addition, they will experience the world-class, HIPAA-compliant data security Veritext offers. “Combining the services of both companies makes the perfect union,” Josephs continued.
DFW was founded by David Feldman in 2002 along with his two children, Michael and Sheril, who have owned and operated the company since 2009. DFW’s client-facing team will stay on with David Feldman Worldwide, a Veritext Company after the acquisition, ensuring that clients will receive the same stellar service they have come to expect. DFW is based in New York City and serves clients across the United States and in foreign locations.
“By joining with Veritext, we will be able to offer our clients a full breadth of technology solutions to make the deposition process more effective. They will also have access to the more than 50 Veritext offices around the country,” said Michael Feldman, President of David Feldman Worldwide, a Veritext Company. “Veritext shares our commitment to quality court reporting and impeccable service, which makes this transition the perfect fit for our clients and our employees.”
Veritext is the largest nationwide provider of deposition and litigation support solutions, providing court reporters, advanced technology and services to law firms and corporations across the United States. Veritext has been serving the legal community since 1997 and has extensive experience in all types of complex litigation. The company recently announced acquisitions in Florida and New Jersey and their expansion in the St. Louis marketplace. More information can be found at www.veritext.com.Read More
HANOVER PARK, IL – School Health Corporation announced today that it has acquired Palos Sports, Inc., based in Alsip, IL. For over 60 years Palos Sports has been a leading distributor of physical education supplies to school districts, park districts, and Special Olympics programs throughout the United States. Educators and recreational groups look to Palos Sports for innovative sports, recreation and physical fitness products and equipment, as well as for curricula and knowledge to make their programs more impactful and successful.
School Health is the leading national provider of health supplies, services and solutions, serving professionals in educational settings in the fields of Sports Medicine, Health Services, Special Education and Early Childhood. With over 20,000 physical education, recreation and athletic items in stock, Palos Sports’ products and customers complement School Health’s offerings.
“Together, School Health and Palos Sports will boast the nation’s largest offering of health and wellness products to the education market in the areas of Physical Education, Sports Medicine, Health Services, Special Education and Early Childhood,” said Rob Rogers, President, School Health Corporation. “We both seek to improve the health and well-being of students in schools across America. We are pleased that Palos Sports is now part of the School Health family.”
“Palos Sports is a perfect addition to our offerings given that physical education is playing an ever-important role in helping students maximize their learning potential,” said Scott Cormack, Executive Vice President of Business Development and Strategy, School Health Corporation.
School Health Corporation will maintain Palos Sports as a separate company which will continue to operate in Palos’ current facility, supported by Palos’ dedicated employees who will join the School Health organization. The company will operate under the name Palos Sports, a School Health company. Dan Dunne will continue as president of Palos Sports.
We are very excited to be a part of the School Health team,” said Dan Dunne, President, Palos Sports. “Our team is proud to be a part of School Health’s vison and commitment to the health, development and wellness of all students. Today we start an exciting journey together, combining our talents and knowledge with a great company.”
Rich Jackim, a managing partner at Jackim Woods & Company, advises School Health Corporation on its corporate development activities and arranged the transaction.
Since its founding in 1957, School Health has been helping school-based health professionals keep students healthy both physically and mentally. As a national, full-service provider of health supplies and services it serves health professionals in educational settings from pre-school to college; collaborating with customers and advocating for the health of those entrusted in their care. School Health’s comprehensive offering includes health supplies, sports medicine equipment, early childhood products, and special needs aids. The company goes beyond merely supplying products by also providing product support, training, advisory services and exceptional customer care.
Palos Sports was founded in 1957. With 60 years of expertise in physical education, Palos Sports provides equipment and curriculum to schools nationwide. The company’s offerings are specifically designed to meet standards set by SHAPE America. The physical education and recreation equipment provider is known for its expert knowledge and individual attention provided to each physical educator, curriculum director, and sports director it serves.
About Jackim Woods & Company
Rich Jackim, Jackim Woods & Company, advises School Health Corporation on its corporate development activities and arranged the transaction. Jackim Woods & Company provides financial advisory services on mergers and acquisitions to clients nationwide.Read More