John Wiley & Sons, Inc. announced the acquisition of French e-learning provider CrossKnowledge for $175 million in cash. The deal is expected to close on May 1st.
CrossKnowledge is a privately held company with over 200 employees.
Founded in 2000, CrossKnowledge is a leading European company in distance learning solutions, offering subscription-based, digital learning solutions for multinational corporations, universities, and small and medium-sized enterprises. Its clients include Carrefour, CocaCola Entreprise, FedEx, Geodis, Jaguar Land Rover and others.
CrossKnowledge’s cloud-based platform provides over 17,000 learning objects in 17 languages which can be customized for each individual client. According to the press release, CrossKnowledge generated revenue of $37 million in its fiscal year ending June 30, 2013.
Earlier this month CrossKnowledge announced a partnership with US-based LearnSmart, combining their course libraries to broaden their reach of combined IT, soft skills, management and leadership training.
According to WSJ, the acquisition is part of Wiley’s strategy to add digital offerings to its print publishing business and to broaden its professional development portfolio. Earlier this month Wiley acquired Profiles International for $51 million in cash.
This is also not the first acquisition of a French legacy brand in the education space. In December Rosetta Stone acquired TellMeMore for $28 million. Benjamin Vedrenne-Cloquet, co-founder of Edxus Group and EdTech Europe, sees an apparent failure of European institutional investors to recognise the strong case for investment in European education technology.
“US investors are far more active, and Europe’s best education technologies companies are at risk of being controlled by non-European sources of capital. Another recent example is Danish company Area 9, a world leader in adaptive learning acquired by American education giant, McGraw Hill Education.”
- Wiley Signs Definitive Agreement to Acquire CrossKnowledge | Press Release
- Wiley Acquires Profiles International | Press Release
- LearnSmart and CrossKnowledge Announce Global Leading eLearning Partnership | PR Newswire
- Rosetta Stone acquires French Competitor Tell Me More for $28 million | EDUKWEST
- HEDLINE: McGraw-Hill Education acquires Area9, David Levin new CEO | EDUKWEST