Aptech, which is one of the larger listed players in vocational education space, has been put up for sale by its promoter, billionaire investor Rakesh Jhunjhunwala.
The Rs 223-crore Aptech, was started as an IT training institute in Mumbai in 1986 by Atul Nishar. After symbolising computer training in India for a long time along with rival NIIT, it has now evolved into a broad-based education services firm with courses in animation, IT hardware, English learning and aviation and is present in 40 countries. Last fiscal year, it had an operating margin of 20.64% and reported net profit of Rs 42 crore in FY11. In 2o10, it also bought Maya Academy of Advanced Cinematics, promoted by Bollywood director Ketan Mehta and Deepa Sahi for Rs 76 Crore.
Jhunjhunwala, holds a 35.79% stake in the company which he acquired six years ago from Chennai based SSI promoter Kalpathi Suresh at a price of Rs 56 per share.
Avendus Capital has been appointed as the Investment bank for the deal. Possible buyers, include TeamLease, a leading staffing and training company interest in vocational education , and Manipal Universal Learning, one of India’s largest private education organizations. How ever it is possible that an international education company might buy Aptech to enter the Indian marktet. .
Jhunjhunwala made the investment as a private equity investor and would be making a handsome profit it is expected. Aptech could be valued as high as $150 million, as reported in Wall Street Journal.