2021 Key Highlights 

K-12 Media and Tech, which saw volume increase 56 percent on a yearly basis, surpassed Professional Training Services as the industry’s most active segment in 2021.

Three of the industry’s top ten largest transactions during the year were completed by Byju, which develops personalized learning programs for K-12 students. Byju acquired Aakash Educational Services, a provider of comprehensive test preparatory services for medical, engineering, and entrance exams, for $950 million; Great Learning, which offers professional upskilling and higher education courses, for $600 million; and Epic! Creations, a digital reading platform for kids 12 and under, for $500 million.

2021 Key Trends

Total transaction volume in 2021 improved by six percent over 2020, from 433 to 457.

Total transaction value in 2021 rose by 41 percent over 2020, from $21.36 billion to $30.22 billion.

The median revenue multiple increased from 2.5x in 2020 to 3.5x in 2021.

The segment with the largest rise in volume in 2021 over 2020 was Higher Ed Media and Tech, which improved 63 percent, from 54 to 88 deals.

M&A Market Overview

Berkery Noyes tracked 1,371 Education transactions between 2019 and 2021, of which 250 disclosed financial terms, and calculated the aggregate value to be $51.95 billion. Based on known transaction values, we project values of 1,121 undisclosed transactions to be $12.65 billion, totaling $64.60 billion worth of transactions tracked over the past three years.

Disclosed median enterprise value multiples for all segments combined in this report during the last 36 months were 2.7x revenue and 9.6x EBITDA.

Over the past three years, deals in the $10-$20 million range received a median enterprise value multiple of 1.9x revenue, compared to 2.9x revenue for those in the $20-$160 million range and 6.2x revenue for those in the $160 million and above range.