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Daily Mail And General To Sell Hobsons In Two Separate Deals For Total $410 Mln

Daily Mail and General Trust plc (DMGT.L) announced Friday that it has agreed the sale of Hobsons, its EdTech business, in two separate transactions, for total proceeds of approximately $410 million.

Hobsons' Naviance and Intersect businesses will be sold to US-based PowerSchool, a provider of K-12 education technology solutions, for approximately $320 million, and are expected to be part of PowerSchool's unified platform. The timing of completion is subject to the customary closing conditions.

Further, Hobsons' Starfish business will go through an internal restructuring where it will be spun-out from the rest of Hobsons. Then, the business will be sold to EAB, a US-based education company, for approximately $90 million. The timing of completion is subject to the customary closing conditions.

Naviance is a K-12 college and career readiness solution and Intersect is a higher education student match and fit business. Starfish is a higher education student retention and success platform.

In fiscal 2020, Hobsons generated 6 million pounds adjusted operating profit from revenues of 85 million pounds. Hobsons was restructured in 2017 to focus on high-growth opportunities in Student Success.

Paul Zwillenberg, DMGT CEO, said, "Consistent with our strategy, the divestitures will increase the focus of the DMGT portfolio, resulting in the Group operating in four sectors, compared to ten in 2016. The proceeds will strengthen DMGT's existing net cash position, further enhancing DMGT's significant financial flexibility."

In the deal, Centerview Partners is acting as exclusive financial adviser and Baker McKenzie as exclusive legal adviser to DMGT.

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