By Business Reporter
CURRO’S tertiary education arm, Stadio, has acquired a 74 percent stake in Southern Business School (SBS), as the company continues its strategy to expand its geographical reach in the sector.
Stadio’s latest regional acquisition is still subject to the fulfilment of certain conditions, including approval by competition authorities, the company said in note to its shareholders.
Last Thursday, the Johannesburg Stock Exchange-listed private education group announced the acquisition of a 74 percent issued share capital stake in South African-based SBS, which holds 51 percent of the Southern Business School of Namibia.
Curro is planning to unbundle Stadio later in 2017, as part of a broader shakeup of the company, which will result in founding Chief Executive Officer, Chris van Der Merwe, taking up a non-executive role at Curro in July, and heading up Stadio.
Curro Chief Operating Officer Andries Greyling is expected to succeed him.
“Curro reaffirms its intention to unbundle and list Stadio separately, during the course of this year. Shareholders are advised that further details, in respect of such unbundling and listing, will be released on the Stock Exchange News Service (SENS), in due course,” Curro said in the statement.
SBS is a South African-registered higher education institution, with SBS Namibia being recognised by the Namibian Qualification Authority.
SBS has 11 accredited distance learning programmes, ranging from higher certificates to Masters’ degrees.
Earlier in June the company, through Stadio, acquired 100 percent of SA-based film school Afda.
In November 2016, Curro also acquired half of Botswana’s BA Isago University, with the acquisition being done via its subsidiary, the Embury Institute for Higher Education.
In March 2016, Curro also acquired Windhoek Gymnasium in Namibia.
Curro’s vision is to make independent school education accessible to more learners throughout South Africa, while reaching 80 schools, accommodating 80 000 learners, by 2020.
“It is clear that Curro can potentially develop a large number of independent schools across South Africa. The development of every independent school creates open spaces in State schools for new enrolments.
“In addition, this saves the State the capital outlay of between R50 million and R80 million to erect a school, and running costs for a mature school of more than R30 million per annum,” Curro said.
”Curro will therefore expand its group of independent schools, by means of new developments and acquisitions. This strategy will not only support the public sector, but will also provide parents with additional options for their children’s education. Curro believes that independent schools will increasingly improve educational standards, which will lead to the further development of the South African population, which in turn will contribute meaningfully to enhancing economic growth,” the company added.
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