Apollo, parent of University of Phoenix, buys BPP Holdings

April 5, 2010 · Leave a Comment 

Apollo, the parent company of University of Phoenix, has big plans to enter the UK MBA market. The company recently completed the acquisition of BPP Holdings, the UK-based professional education company, for a purchase price of approximately $607 million.

Though BPP’s main business is financial training, BPP is also the parent of BPP Business School, the UK’s only for-profit business institution with the authority to award degrees. BPP began teaching its first MBA course a year ago, but the company expects the school to see solid year-on-year profit and growth, especially with Apollo’s backing and resources.

“We are excited to welcome BPP to Apollo Global and look forward to joining together to provide enhanced educational advancement and career development opportunities to professionals in the UK and throughout Europe,” said Greg Cappelli, co-chief executive officer of Apollo Group and chairman of Apollo Global. “BPP provides us with an ideal platform from which we can expand our European presence. We have long been impressed with BPP, the reputation of its academic programs, the caliber of the faculty and employees, and the leadership and direction of its management team. Together our organizations are a good fit strategically, operationally and culturally.”

With the acquisition of BPP, Apollo expands its footprint into the UK to provide an important service to a segment of the population previously left out of traditional higher education. This acquisition will boost BPP’s online operations. By 2011, every class BPP Business School offers will be available online. Chris Brady, dean of BPP Business School, expects most students to select a hybrid method of learning, where they take some classes at physical campuses and others online. This appeals to the company’s target market of busy working professionals who place a premium on convenience.

Apollo’s acquisition of BPP comes at a time when the severe global downturn has heightened the need for the business education degrees that Apollo and BPP provide. “Many of the jobs being lost today may never come back again. People are figuring out that the skill set they have is no longer relevant for the economy of the future. They realise that to move up in their career they need other qualifications and more levels of higher education such as an MBA ,” Mr. Cappelli says.

About Apollo Group, Inc.

Apollo Group, Inc. has been an education provider for more than 30 years, providing academic access and opportunity to students through its subsidiaries, University of Phoenix, Institute for Professional Development, College for Financial Planning, Western International University, Meritus University, Insight Schools and Apollo Global.

About BPP Holdings

BPP Holdings provides training and exam-based courses for a wide range of professional careers. Founded in 1976 as an accountant training company, BPP remains as one of the largest such companies Europe. The school also offers courses and certifications for actuarial, financial services, human resources, law, marketing, market research, and tax professions. It provides ongoing professional development courses and offers classroom learning, distance learning, and e-learning courses.

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