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SEEK to purchase OES
Posted on Monday, 20 March 2017 14:23
SEEK has agreed to acquire an additional 30.0 per cent interest in Australian online courses marketplace Online Education Services (OES) from Swinburne University of Technology for about AUD 118.50 million (USD 91.26 million).

The deal to increase its holding from 50.0 per cent to 80.0 per cent will be funded using existing cash and debt facilities and should add to earnings per share in fiscal 2018.

As a result of the transaction, SEEK provides the target with a greater flexibility to secure multiple education partners in its marketplace.

Melbourne-headquartered OES offers specialist operations in online course design, student support and administration.

Both Swinburne University of Technology and SEEK formed the company to deliver online tutoring services to students in 2011.

The business has had 1,500 alumni since the first graduates in March 2014.

Melbourne-based SEEK claims to be the largest global online employment marketplace.

The firm, which was formally known as SEEK Communications, operates across Australia, New Zealand, China, Brazil, Mexico and Bangladesh, as well as Africa and South East Asia.

SEEK posted revenue of AUD 495.60 million in the six months ended 31st December 2016, a slight increase on AUD 488.70 million in the corresponding timeframe of 2015.

Net profit for the first half of 2016 totalled AUD 92.70 million (H1 2015: AUD 295.90 million).

According to Zephyr, the M&A database published by Bureau van Dijk, there have been 130 deals targeting businesses in the educational sector announced worldwide so far 2017, with the acquisition of Spanish group Nueva Agora Centro de Estudios being the largest.

Private equity firm Providence Equity Partners paid EUR 350.00 million for a 90.0 per cent stake in the company in February.

Other targets include Centro Educacional Cruzeiro do Sul, Academedia and Beijing Vango Sports.

© Zephus Ltd