BPP sold to private equity giant

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By Aishah Hussain on

TDR Capital snaps up education provider

BPP University has been sold to private equity house TDR Capital.

The sale comes after reports speculated last week that a deal was imminent.

TDR Capital is acquiring BPP University, of which BPP Law School is a subsidiary, from Vanta Education (formerly Apollo Global) for an undisclosed sum.

As part of the deal, BPP will be run as a standalone company under the existing management team and remain headquartered in London.

BPP’s CEO Graham Gaddes said: “This is a significant vote of confidence not only in our business and our management team, but also its strategy and the long-term future of UK higher education and professional training.”

“TDR are long-term investors with a strong track record of supporting management teams and investing in businesses to achieve growth. We believe they will prove excellent partners for BPP and we are hugely excited by the opportunity to continue building on our successes and achievements across the whole business, helping thousands of professionals and employers achieve their respective goals, as we continue ‘Building Careers Through Education’.”

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BPP last changed hands in 2009 for $607 million (then £373 million) but a reported sale attempt in 2019 was abandoned after no buyer came through.

Jon Rosen of TDR added: “We are excited to work with Graham and his team and support the excellent work they are doing. We believe there are compelling opportunities to build on their strengths in the face of growing demand for high-quality education courses and training programmes.”

“We have a history of supporting the successful growth of leading businesses across a number of different sectors, combining ambitious growth plans and strategic focus with targeted investment. This is an exciting time to be investing in education, an important sector for the UK and globally, as the need for highly skilled workers continually increases.”

TDR Capital owns a host of companies in the UK and beyond, including David Lloyd Leisure, Stonegate Pubs and half of the EG Group of petrol stations. It recently formed part of a consortium that bought Asda from Walmart, subject to clearance from the competition watchdog.

News of the sale comes just months before the Solicitors Qualifying Exam (SQE) comes into force on 1 September 2021. The new two-part assessment is set to shake-up legal education and has paved the way for a number of new training providers to enter the market.

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