Tuesday, August 06, 2002

Profits Matter

I've often compared Edison and Nobel Learning Communities, citing Nobel's tighter focus on their business model as an advantage over Edison schools. Apparently, being the only education management organization that actually makes a profit has paid off for Nobel's CEO Jack Clegg.

Nobel Learning Communities Inc. said Tuesday it agreed to be acquired by a management-led group in a buyout offer worth about $110 million, including the assumption of debt. The Media, Pa.-based provider of education and school management services said the group will pay $7.75 a share in cash, and stock options will be converted into the right to receive a cash payment equal to their price.

The deal represents a 32 percent premium to its closing price Monday of $5.85 on the Nasdaq Stock Market. The shares ended Tuesday at $7.25, up 24 percent.

The buyout group is led by senior management members, as well as Gryphon Partners II LP and Cadigan Investment Partners. The company will continue to operate under its current name and operating structure. The company runs 149 schools in 15 states including private preschools, elementary, middle and high schools, charter schools and schools for learning challenged children.

The company earned $1 million, or 14 cents a share, on revenue of $40.7 million in the third quarter ended March 31.

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