EdtechX debuts on Nasdaq as SPAC

Published 09/10/2018

EdtechX Holdings has become the first education and education technology Special Purpose Acquisition Company as it debuted on the Nasdaq, the company has announced.

The firm intends to build a platform of “next generation education and training businesses” and will look at opportunities globally but initially focus on Europe and Asia, according to CEO Benjamin Vedrenne-Cloquet.

“We bring deep sector knowledge and experience in managing technology-led growth strategies”

“We are targeting growing and profitable, management owned or financial sponsor backed companies willing to join EdtechX Holdings in order to pursue ambitious growth strategies and make the most of the consolidation and digital disruption opportunities available in the education and training sector globally,” he said.

“We not only provide strategic access to the world’s most innovative and largest capital market, we also bring deep sector knowledge and experience in managing acquisitive and technology-led growth strategies,” he added.

The SPAC will raise funds through an initial public offering which it will hold in a trust until investment opportunities arises. EdtechX has expressed that it intends to focus its strategy acquiring businesses in values between $100-$600m (and up to $1bn) in the first 18 months.

Vedrenne-Cloquet is joined at EdtechX by chairman Charles McIntyre, together with whom he leads specialist education and edtech focused investment bank IBIS Capital.

As investments made by EdtechX remain different to those made by IBIS, the investment bank is involved in the beginning of EdtechX as anchor investor, according to Vedrenne-Cloquet.

IBIS’s most significant investment to date has been it’s co-investment with Beech Tree PE in corporate training platform, Learnlight, he added.

European independent asset management company Azimut Enterprises will join IBIS as sponsor investors in EdtechX, as it looks at controlling acquisitions of large education and training assets that are early adopters of technology.

“The intention is to focus on education and training businesses that are well positioned strategically to use capital and technology to boost their growth and ultimately, their profitability,” McIntyre said.

EdtechX sees opportunities in the international education, alternative education and corporate training market segments, the chairman continued.

“These are segments with a large number of players that are growing, profitable and early adopters of technology. We believe these are good proxies to get exposure to both the fundamental long term growth of the sector and its natural digital transformation,” McIntyre added.

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