Private Equity Firm TPG Acquires TSL Education For $600 Million

Posted Jul 8, 2013

Private equity firm TPG is going to buy educational publisher company TSL Education from Charterhouse for $600 million.  TPG has plans to grow the digital sales to TSL’s online network of customers, which includes around 52 million teachers.  Another deal that was of this scale in the digital education space was Pearson’s takeover of online educational company EmbanetCompass for $650 million this past October.

TPG will likely grow TSL Education to the point where it can be sold for a higher price or spun into another public company.

TSL did not directly disclose the terms of the deal, but sources with the transaction leaked it to the press.  TSL is known for owning the Times Educational Supplement and is organizes conferences for the educational space.  TPG will be raising around 250 million pounds of debt, underwritten by Goldman Sachs and Jefferies to help buy the company.  This includes around 170 million of senior leveraged loans, 60 million pounds of second lien loans, and a 20 million pound revolving credit facility.

Charterhouse acquired TSL in 2007 and hired Goldman Sachs to find a buyer in December 2012.

TPG is TSL’s third owner.  Exponent Private Equity bought TSL Education from News International in 2005.  This acquisition was driven by TPG Managing Partner Karl Peterson.  Peterson used to be the chief executive officer of Hotwire.

“TPG’s global presence and extensive online experience fit well with the Company’s ambitions and we anticipate accelerating growth through further investments in TSL’s digital capabilities,” stated Peterson.