Q3 2020 Key Highlights

The most active acquirer through the 1st 3 Quarters of 2020 was Unacademy, an online learning platform based in India, with five transactions.

Unacademy acquired Coursavy, a test preparation startup focused on India’s Union Public Service Commission (UPSC) exams; Mastree, which offers live classes and curated courses for grades 6 to 8 in math and science; PrepLadder, a postgraduate medical entrance exam preparation platform; CodeChef, an educational initiative and global community centered on algorithms and computer programming; and Kreatryx, an online preparation platform for competitive exams in engineering and other areas.

The combined Professional Training Technology and Services segments accounted for 50 percent of aggregate volume during the quarter.

Q3 2020 Key Trends

Total transaction volume in Q3 2020 improved 51 percent over Q2 2020, from 75 to 113. Of note, strategic acquirers accounted for 76 percent of the industry’s total volume year-to-date.

Total transaction value in Q3 2020 nearly quadrupled over Q2 2020, from $1.1 billion to $4.2 billion.

Multiples & Value Trends

The median revenue multiple from 2019 through the 1st 3 Quarters of 2020 declined 11 percent, from 2.8x to 2.5x.

Top Ten Deals Through Q3 2020

The top ten deals by value have seen two new additions since our half year report: Adtalem Global Education’s announced acquisition of Walden University, an online institution that enrolls about 48,000 students, for $1.5 billion; and Cambium Learning Group’s announced acquisition of Rosetta Stone, a technology-based learning solutions company best known for its language programs, for $735 million.

These two transactions, with an aggregate value of $2.2 billion, represented 17 percent of transaction value in the 1st 3 Quarters of 2020 and 52 percent of Q3 2020 transaction value.