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Revenues hit $2bn at Kaplan

publication date: Mar 31, 2008
author/source: Ed Tranham

Kaplan, the education division of the Washington Post Company, reported revenues in 2007 of $2.03bn, up 21% from $1.68bn in 2006. However, operating income was up only 14% to $149m as a result of a number of problems within its US businesses. Overall Kaplan represents just under half of the Washington Post Company’s revenues and a little over 30% of its operating profit.

Higher Education, including Kaplan's domestic and international post-secondary education businesses, saw revenues grow by 19% for 2007 to $1.02bn and total enrolments up 11% to 80,000 by the end of December. Operating income increased 25% to $125m.

The acquisitions of Aspect and PMBR helped Kaplan’s test prep business to a 24% growth in revenues to $569m but there were significant weaknesses within the company’s Score! business, which saw net income decline by 8% to $71m as a result of online competition. Kaplan has closed almost half of its Score! centres, many of which are franchise operations, and took an $11.2m restructuring hit in the final quarter of 2007.

The professional division of Kaplan, which acquired the UK business Hawksmere from ISIS Private Equity in January this year, saw revenues grow 18% to $439m largely due to the acquisitions of Tribeca, EduNeering and the Financial Services Institute of Australasia. The UK end generated higher revenues and operating profit on the back of a favourable exchange rate. However, the $41m operating profit would have been higher if a $6m hit had not been incurred as a result of the reorganisation of the business in the US.

It was also a good year for Kaplan’s senior management who received $41.3m worth of stock options in 2007, compared to $27.7m in 2006. But 2008 may be a difficult year with the credit crunch looming large over student loans and the financial sector.

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