Weld North Holdings LLC, an investment company founded by former Kaplan, Inc. CEO Jonathan Grayer in partnership with Kohlberg Kravis Roberts & Co. (KKR), announced that it has entered the $3.6 billion education, school improvement services and professional development industry by acquiring a 100% interest in each of Editure Professional Development Inc. and JBHM Education Group. Both transactions closed in September.
Terms of the agreements were not disclosed.
Weld North intends to combine the two companies, creating a national organization that will focus on helping build strong K-12 schools by providing consulting services in the most critical areas including the Common Core State Standards, utilization of technology in the classroom, school turnaround, and teacher effectiveness. Weld North Managing Director Justin Serrano will become Chief Executive Officer of the combined organization. Serrano brings nearly 20 years of experience in the education industry, most recently serving as President of Kaplan K12 and College Prep Programs at Kaplan Test Prep. Serrano has deep experience in the K-12 education space, having spent his career at Kaplan working with K-12 students and schools, providing state test readiness programs and college preparation solutions. Key senior management from both JBHM and Editure will remain with the new organization providing seamless continuity for the ongoing business operations. The new company will be headquartered in New York City and will retain existing offices in Jackson, MS, Costa Mesa, CA and Austin, TX.
“The implementation of the Common Core Standards, coupled with increasing rigor for teacher evaluation has presented a unique opportunity to create a national provider of school improvement and professional development services,” said Jonathan Grayer, Chairman and CEO of Weld North. “By combining these two independently exceptional organizations, we will immediately create one of the largest independent players in school improvement and professional development. This move, as well as our earlier investment in Education2020, furthers Weld North’s intention to play a significant role in tackling the country’s difficult K-12 education challenges.”
“We know that successful schools require strong leadership, well-trained, motivated and accountable teachers and effective curriculum and tools,” said Justin Serrano, Managing Director, Weld North. “The combination of Editure PD and JBHM will enable us to support state, district and school initiatives to effectively foster these types of environments.”
“My dream for JBHM has always been to take the work we’ve done so well in our core states to a national scale,” said Dr. Mike Walters, Chief Executive Officer, JBHM. “Weld North has the expertise and capabilities to help us accomplish this goal. Weld North also shares our commitment to children and our passion for improving public education and I’m excited about the future prospects for the business.”
About Editure Professional Development
Editure PD, best known for its Aussie PD division, offers a full suite of professional development solutions for teachers and administrators in schools and education authorities. Located in New York City, with which it has had a long-standing relationship, Editure PD provides online and onsite academic and technology professional development and consulting services to more than 5,000 schools in 25 states. Editure PD tailors its offerings to enable districts and schools to integrate professional development and technology in the classroom. The Company’s suite of services, which includes its industry-leading professional development system, content and courses, enables an environment of continuous development that enhances student outcomes and drives school-wide improvement.
JBHM is recognized as a leader in transformative education services. Located in Jackson, Mississippi, JBHM seeks to assist schools in developing their professional capacities and culture in order to sustain continuous improvement in student learning. The Company’s School Improvement Process reaches from state education agencies through school district personnel school boards, superintendents, district administrators, principals and teachers. JBHM was recently cited in a state of Arkansas study of school improvement providers as the only company achieving statistically significant results in both ELA and Math. More information about the State of Arkansas Bureau of Legislative Research 2012 Review of School Improvement Consulting Expenditures and Results can be found here.
About Weld North
Weld North is an investment company concentrating on education, health and wellness, consumer services and marketing businesses. In partnership with KKR, a leading global investment firm, Weld North seeks to make control investments in businesses with high potential for long-term growth in cash flow. With strong and highly motivated management teams, the firm looks to accelerate growth through an obsessive focus on enhancing the customer experience, operational excellence, marketing expertise, and strategic and disciplined management.