Advent seeks US$500 mil from sale of Singapore tutor-chain

Advent seeks US$500 mil from sale of Singapore tutor-chain
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(Sept 27): US buyout firm Advent International Corp is considering selling the Southeast Asian operations of The Learning Lab, a Singapore-based chain of tutorial centres, according to people with knowledge of the plan.

The Boston-based private-equity fund is working with Rothschild & Co on the sale process, and is seeking to raise at least US$500 million from the transaction, the people said, asking not to be identified as the information is private.

Discussions are at an early stage and Advent could decide not to proceed with a sale, the people said. A representative for Advent declined to comment, while Rothschild didn’t immediately respond to requests for comment. 

The Learning Lab provides education for pre-school, primary, secondary and junior college students in Singapore, according to its website. It also has a presence in countries including Malaysia, Vietnam, Thailand and Indonesia. 

In Singapore, The Learning Lab charges about S$550 (US$406) per month, totaling four lessons for junior college students, according to its website. 

Advent invested in The Learning Lab in 2014, and the firm’s website lists it as a buyout. A report at the time in the Straits Times said Advent paid about S$300 million for a “significant stake”. Later, the US company was considering selling the chain, Bloomberg News reported in September 2018.

Founded in 1984, Advent has invested US$56 billion in over 380 private equity deals across 42 countries, according to its website.