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PremjiInvest to pick Rs200-crore stake in Manipal Universal Learning news

Manipal Universal Learning, the corporate education arm of the education-cum-healthcare Manipal Group, said on Tuesday it had raised Rs200-crore ($43.3 million) in private equity investment from PremjiInvest. PremjiInvest is a $1-billion fund promoted by Wipro Group chairman Azim Premji.

According to Manipal Universal CEO Anand Sudarshan PremjiInvest, together with several other PE investors in Manipal Universal-Capital International and IDFC Private Equity would hold a hold a significant minority stake in the firm. The firm had received substantial investments to the tune of $40 million and $30 million from Capital International and IDFC around three years ago.

Sudarshan said the funds would go towards building a new campus in Dubai, expansion of the Antigua campus, the dental stream in Malaysia and upgradation of technology for next-generation virtual and distance-learning education system, EduNxt for which capital outlays of around $82-$90 million would be required.

PremjiInvest has infused funds into Carnation Auto Services, Healthcare Global Enterprises, the National Stock Exchange of India and Subhiksha Trading Services.

According to Sudarshan the core values of PremjiInvest were fully aligned with that of Manipal Education and Medical Group (MEMG) and education constituted a long-term investment for them.

MEMG is known for use of the M&A strategy in the education sector and in May 2007, it had picked up a stake exceeding 40 per cent in the skill assessment and testing firm, MeriTrac.

In 2008, it acquired the entire shareholding of American University of Antigua (AUA) from New York-based Greater Caribbean Learning Resources and signed a strategic partnership with TutorVista.com. TutorVista is an online-tutoring company aimed at the US and UK markets.

Source: Domain B

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