Philadelphia, PA – Capstone Partners LLC, a leading investment banking firm, is pleased to announce the sale of Oxbridge Academic Resources to WorldStrides, a portfolio company of The Carlyle Group. Oxbridge joins WorldStrides’ impressive lineup of educational student travel programs. WorldStrides, which is the nation’s largest and one of the most respected accredited travel organizations, specializes in providing exceptional educational experiences for more than 300,000 students annually to destinations in more than 90 countries. Capstone Partners served as the exclusive financial advisor to Oxbridge Academic Resources. Terms of the transaction were not disclosed.
Oxbridge conducts premier study abroad programs for middle and high school students at Oxford, Cambridge, Columbia and other notable educational centers in Europe and the United States. The Company prides itself on the number of Rhodes, Fulbright, Marshall and Gates scholars on its summer teaching staff and the wide range of major and minor courses offered at each of its summer programs. The Company’s focus on engaging and intensive experiential learning methodologies that are not only highly effective in enhancing competence in a particular subject, but also geared towards fostering passion for the area of interest, developing intellectual curiosity and creativity, preparing students for success in college, and instilling a lifelong love of learning complements WorldStrides’ approach to offering the highest quality programs available. Oxbridge has a longstanding presence in Oxford and Cambridge, England; Paris and Montpellier, France; Barcelona and Salamanca, Spain; and New York City. For 2015 Oxbridge is adding new programs based at UCLA and St. Andrews University in Scotland.
Oxbridge was acquired by WorldStrides, the largest student educational travel organization in the United States. More than 5,000 elementary, middle and high schools and more than 250 universities choose WorldStrides to manage their educational travel programs. Headquartered in Charlottesville, Virginia, WorldStrides has offices in 21 locations around the world including Australia, China, the United Kingdom, Chile and Canada. WorldStrides is a portfolio company of The Carlyle Group, a global alternative asset manager with more than $200 billion in assets under management.
James G. Basker, a former Rhodes Scholar and the Founder and President of Oxbridge commented: “WorldStrides shares our passion and commitment to academic excellence, making them the ideal partner for us. I look forward to leading Oxbridge into a new era as part of WorldStrides. The decades of investment WorldStrides has made in educational programs and its relationships with thousands of top schools and universities will deepen our ability to provide students from around the world the opportunity to participate in these unique study abroad experiences.” Jim Hall, President and CEO of WorldStrides added, “Both WorldStrides and Oxbridge share a common mission of enriching students’ lives through educational travel programs to unique learning environments. Oxbridge is the clear leader in terms of university-based summer programs for high school students and is highly regarded for its comprehensive curriculum; outstanding faculty; prestigious academic venues; and tenured staff of directors. Needless to say, we couldn’t be more pleased that Oxbridge is joining the WorldStrides family.”
This is the latest transaction in Capstone’s long history of success serving the education market. Commenting on the transaction, Eric Williams, Managing Director of Capstone said, “This is an excellent union of two of the best brands in the educational travel sector, and we are pleased to have assisted in the sale of Oxbridge to WorldStrides.” Mark Surowiak, Capstone Director added, “M&A activity in the education space is being fueled by growth and favorable industry dynamics and private-sector companies stand to benefit. Demand for supplemental education programs is benefitting from several interesting trends including the increasingly competitive landscape in the college admission process, growing affluence in emerging markets, and increasing willingness among parents to invest in supplemental educational programs for their children.”