Skill & You, a major player in vocational e-learning, has been sold to Andera Partners through its fund Winch Capital 4 (The Fund), in an MBO led by Eric Petco and Sonia Levy-Odier, with previous shareholders 21 Centrale Partners, Access Capital Partners, Jolt Capital, Alma Learning Group and Capital Transmission all exiting the company. The Fund now joins the managers with the ambition to create the European leader in vocational e-learning.
See original article here (in French).
Paris, July 16, 2018 (date of original article) – With nearly 100 000 students and 70 million euros in sales expected in 2018, Skill & You stands as a major player in the vocational e-learning French market. Through its 12 specialized schools, the group offers more than 200 professional trainings across various sectors such as cooking, childcare, mechanics or aesthetics, many of which are for preparing for state diplomas (Bac Pro, BTS, CAP).
Under the leadership of the current management team led by Eric Petco and Sonia Levy-Odier, along with the support of its historical shareholders, the group has been deeply transformed in recent years in order to steer its digital shift and become a key player of the e-learning landscape.
The current transaction rewards the group for the accomplished work and acts as a landmark for its new growth phase across France and Europe. The aforementioned managers will benefit from the expertise of Andera’s teams in high-growth projects to accelerate the development of the group beyond its current sectoral and geographic markets, namely through the opening of new schools (like the recent the launch of Ecole des Pros, Esecad, Be Académie and Défi Compta) and the completion of inorganic growth transactions.
This transaction should be finalized by the end of the month and will represent the first investment of Winch Capital 4, the latest of the Winch Capital funds specialized in mid-cap investments, the closing of which is to be announced in a few days. The financing round will be completed with a unitranche loan from LGT European Capital.
Eric Petcoand Sonia Levy-Odier, managers at Skill & You, declare: “This operation is fully aligned with the growth project of the group, and is a milestone for its scaling. We are grateful to our historic shareholders for their support over the past years, during which the group had to initiate an in-depth transformation. We are full of enthusiasm to work alongside Andera Partners for their expertise in this type of project, which makes them the partner of choice for the next stage of growth.”
Laurent Tourtoisand Sylvain Charignon, Associate Directors at Andrea Partners, comment: “We are glad to support Eric Petco and Sonia Levy-Odier in this new step. We found in the Skill & You’s team all the ingredients we have been looking for in the education sector for a long time: a unique know-how regarding pedagogic engineering along with an outstanding delivery capacity. Skill & You benefits both from the growth of the vocational education market and its digital business model. We think the group has all the potential to become a key player in the European e-learning landscape over the next few years.”